Russia is willing to negotiate terms of surrender with Ukraine, Kremlin press secretary Dmitry Peskov said Thursday.
Russian President Vladimir Putin, seeking guarantees from Ukraine of neutral status and no weapons on its territory, has expressed readiness to engage in surrender discussions with Ukraine president Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Peskov said, state-owned RT reported.
Peskov said the stated guarantees would achieve the demilitarization of Ukraine, and eliminate what Russia currently views as a threat to the security of its state and people, RT said.
"The president [Putin] formulated his vision of what we would expect from Ukraine in order for the so-called 'red-line' problems to be resolved. This is neutral status, and this is a refusal to deploy weapons," said Peskov, who added that Putin would determine the timing of the negotiation.
Peskov said Russia would engage in discussions only "if the leadership of Ukraine is ready to talk about it."
"The operation has its goals — they must be achieved. The president said that all decisions have been made, and the goals will be achieved," Peskov said.
Russian forces invaded Ukraine by land, air and sea on Thursday, confirming the worst fears of the West with the biggest attack by one state against another in Europe since World War II.
Ukrainian airports, military bases, and cities, including the capital Kyiv, suffered damage in air strikes in an attempt by Russia to cripple any Ukrainian military response.
An adviser to Zelenskyy said that Russia had seized the decommissioned Chernobyl nuclear plant after a fierce battle.
Earlier, Zelenskyy vowed to provide weapons to anyone who "wants to defend the country" in light of the invasion by Russia.
"We will give weapons to anyone who wants to defend the country. Be ready to support Ukraine in the squares of our cities," he tweeted.
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