'The ball is in their court, we are waiting': Russia on peace talks with Ukraine
Peskov didn't give further details but did claim Kyiv had constantly deviated from previously confirmed agreements.
With no end to the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war in sight, especially after Moscow announced a second round of operations a day ago, the Kremlin Wednesday said it has passed on a draft document to Kyiv containing 'absolutely clear, elaborate wording' of its demands as part of peace talks. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov also said 'the ball is in their court' and that Russia is now 'waiting for a response', news agency AP reported.
Peskov didn't give further details but did claim Kyiv had constantly deviated from previously confirmed agreements. "The dynamic of work on the Ukrainian side leaves much to be desired, the Ukrainians do not show a great inclination to intensify the negotiation process," he was quoted as saying.
Ukraine presented Russia with its own draft last month in Istanbul, where the two sides held talks aimed at ending the conflict. It has been unclear how regularly the two sides have spoken to each other since then.
The Russian invasion of Ukraine – which began on February 24 – has forced more than five million people to flee the war-torn country, AP reported citing the UN refugee agency Wednesday.
Ukraine had a pre-war population of 44 million and UNHCR says the conflict has displaced more than seven million within Ukraine along with the 5.03 million who had left as of Wednesday. According to the agency, another 13 million people are believed to be trapped in the war-affected areas.
Meanwhile, Mariupol – where Russian troops have intensified their assault – could fall into Russian hands within 'hours', news agency AFP quoted a Ukrainian official as saying. As the fighting raged, the two sides also agreed to a humanitarian corridor to allow civilians to flee the devastated port city. The port city has strategic value as a link between territories in the south and east of Ukraine which are held by Russian forces or Russia-backed separatists.
(With inputs from AFP, AP)