The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky stated that he had repeatedly raised the issue of Crimea in talks with foreign partners, including Russian President Volodymyr Putin. However, the Russian Federation does not want to discuss the annexation of the peninsula.
The President of Ukraine announced this on Wednesday, May 20, during a conversation with journalists.
“Ukraine directly discussing the situation in Crimea. And the United States, and Canada, and most EU countries. I always raise this issue… Recently, Pompeo (US Secretary of State – ed.) said: until Crimea returns – sanctions (from Russia) will not be lifted. So far, this is the only way we talk about Crimea. Unfortunately, I must state that when there was the first meeting in Normandy, Merkel, and with the President of France and I raised this issue. And honestly, I told Putin that. I feel that Russia does not want to discuss this issue. But we remember that this is our land with you,” Zelensky stressed.
At the same time, the President considered it unfair that the issue of Crimea doesn’t discuss during the talks in Minsk. According to the President of Ukraine, the number of platforms for discussing the Crimean issue should be increased.
In addition, Zelensky said that he still hopes to end the war in the Donbas due to the Minsk agreements. However, he admitted that the Minsk process slowed down a bit due to the coronavirus. “Therefore, I give myself a few more months to press and find a diplomatic way out of this situation in accordance with the Minsk agreements,” he said. Zelensky also assured that Ukraine has a “Plan B and a Plan C”, but he wouldn’t like to launch them.
He added that in parallel with the Minsk agreements he expects further direct talks with Volodymyr Putin.
“Despite the fact that society has different assessments of the direct talks between President Zelensky and President Putin, I am convinced that we should do so. There are some things that can only be understood when you are one-on-one. There are some answers that you can and want to hear when you are one-on-one,” the head of state stressed.
Also in a conversation with journalists, Zelensky answered another important question of foreign policy relations – the conflict with Hungary, which arose due to the adoption of the law on education.
According to the President of Ukraine, he wants to sign a memorandum with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban.
“Mr. Orban has been looking for a meeting with me for a year. I said that I was ready for this fundamental meeting, at which I would like us to sign a memorandum of everything: the security situation, respect, a memorandum of respect for history. We have difficult relations with Hungary so far, but I think we will solve this issue in the near future,” Zelensky said.
It will be recalled that during the visit of Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Siarto to Kyiv in early February, Ukraine and Hungary agreed on the conditions under which the leaders of the two countries will meet.