NewsKremlin responds to Pope Francis' call for Ukraine peace talks

Kremlin responds to Pope Francis' call for Ukraine peace talks

Pope Francis's call for negotiations to end the war in Ukraine is understandable for the Kremlin.
Pope Francis's call for negotiations to end the war in Ukraine is understandable for the Kremlin.
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10:55 AM EDT, March 11, 2024
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The Pope's remarks during his interview with Swiss radio and television ignited widespread reactions. Francis notably mentioned: "The stronger is the one who recognizes the situation, who cares for the nation, and who possesses the courage to raise the white flag and engage in negotiations. In today's world, such discussions can be facilitated with the aid of international powers. The term 'negotiate' embodies courage," as reported by PAP. His reference to the "white flag," commonly seen as a sign of capitulation, stirred significant controversy.
Ukraine dismissed the Pope's suggestion for peace talks on Sunday. President Volodymyr Zelensky described the Pope's attempt at mediation as "virtual." Conversely, a Russian government official viewed the suggestion favorably, acknowledging the Pope's inclination towards dialogue. Dmitry Peskov, a spokesperson for the Kremlin, relayed to reporters, according to Reuters, that the pontiff's approach was perfectly rational.
Peskov highlighted that President Vladimir Putin has consistently expressed Russia's willingness to enter discussions, but Kyiv has turned down such overtures. "Regrettably, calls for dialogue from the Pope and reiterated gestures from other entities, including Russia, have been unequivocally rejected," Peskov remarked.
Peskov attributed Ukraine's reluctance to enter negotiations to a flawed belief that the West is capable of defeating Russia. He argued that the unfolding situations on the battlefield strongly suggest otherwise. "This profound misunderstanding and grave error are blatantly contradicted by the developments on the front lines," he asserted.
Source: Reuters, PAP, WP News
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