25 Mar 2022 18:48

Russia in talks with Ukraine insists on comprehensive treaty - Medinsky

MOSCOW. March 25 (Interfax) - The Russian side in the talks with Ukraine insists on a comprehensive treaty, which is unlikely to be signed if the positions that are vitally important to Moscow are not taken into account, Vladimir Medinsky, the head of the Russian delegation and the Russian president's aide, said.

"We insist on a comprehensive treaty, which, besides the neutral status of Ukraine, besides Ukraine's security guarantees, also envisages a whole number of positions that are vitally important to our country - demilitarization, denazification, determination and recognition of Crimea and Donbas, and also a whole number of positons of the treaty without considering and taking into account of which, I think, the signing of a treaty is not highly likely," Medinsky told reporters on Friday.

The Ukrainian side "is particularly concerned about the receipt of security guarantees from third powers in the event of Ukraine's non-accession to NATO," he said. "And this position is quite understandable," he said.

"Unfortunately, we see that our Ukrainian colleagues are striving to drag out the negotiations. They're not in any hurry, believe that time is on their side and openly say that they have many decision-making centers that need to coordinate one or another decision. That's the reality we're living in," Medinsky said.

The Ukrainian side at the talks is taking time to think and consulting with third parties, he said.

"Unfortunately, here, as far as we understand, and they're not hiding it, they're limited in [their ability to] make independent decisions. Therefore, the current state of affairs does not look promising so far," he said.

He also said he does not share the optimism of the Ukrainian delegation, which talked about "significant progress."

"There has been no progress yet on the principled positions on which the Russian side insists," Medinsky said.