(MENAFN - UkrinForm) Russian President Vladimir Putin has said he is ready to meet with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in Moscow, but the issue of ending the war in eastern Ukraine can be discussed only after the Ukrainian authorities hold talks with "DPR and LPR leaders."
Putin said this at a meeting with Alexander Lukashenko on Thursday, April 22, according to the Izvestia news site.
According to Putin, if Zelensky wants to discuss bilateral relations, he invites him to Moscow, but if Zelensky wants to discuss the "problems of Donbas," Putin proposed that he do so with "DPR and LPR leaders."
"If it's about discussing the problems of Donbas, then, first of all, the Ukrainian leadership should meet with the leaders of 'republics,' 'LPR' and 'DPR,' and only then discuss these problems with representatives of third countries, which is Russia in this case," Putin said.
At the same time, according to him, if the issue concerns the development of bilateral relations, Russia is ready to "receive the president of Ukraine in Moscow at any time convenient for him." Putin also believes that "the current Ukrainian leadership has recently taken many steps that are destroying relations between the two countries." Putin said that this concerns a number of issues in bilateral relations, the attitude to the Russian Orthodox Church, as well as to the Russian language.
Zelensky addressed Putin on April 20, inviting him to meet "in any part of the Ukrainian Donbas where war is ongoing."
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