A protracted war – with no definitive result in the offing – would uniquely serve the interests of Russian President Vladimir Putin, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said.
With thousands of casualties reportedly piling up for both countries, Zelenskyy warned Putin dragging out the war could result in other countries wavering in their support of Ukraine.
As a worst-case scenario, a drawn-out war might even force some world leaders to pressure Ukraine into accepting an "undesirable" outcome that is only beneficial to Russia.
"Everyone really wants to push us little by little toward some result that is definitely undesirable for us because we have not been asked yet, but beneficial for other parties that have their own interests. Again, different: both financial and political," Zelenskyy said, Newsweek reported.
Russia and Ukraine have yet to make any progress on peace negotiations, with neither side bringing substantive demands to the negotiating table.
"Such negotiations are currently at zero," Zelenskyy said.
Monday's comments run similar to Zelenskyy's exclusive interview with Newsmax last week, when the Ukrainian leader said his country would not concede "anything" to Russia.
The Russia-Ukraine war has produced only fleeting moments of calm since the end of February. As part of that, Ukraine has stood strong in its pledge of only ending the war when Russian troops have returned to their pre-invasion positions.
As a result, according to news outlet Ukrinform, Zelenskyy has cautioned his own people against that false feeling of assuming this war would soon reach an imminent conclusion, even if neither country dominates the other's military.
And therein lies the crux of the matter: Ukraine officials are focused on winning this military conflict, or "special military operation," whereas some world leaders might be looking for a diplomatic resolution.
Over the weekend, French President Emmanuel Macron suggested Russia does not need to be humiliated in order for Ukraine to be victorious.
"We must not humiliate Russia so that the day when the fighting stops we can build an exit ramp through diplomatic means," Macron said.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba reportedly shot back: "We all better focus on how to put Russia in its place. This will bring peace and save lives."
The above comments suggest Ukraine will not be surrendering territory to Russia anytime soon.
Pro-Russian forces in the Donetsk region of Ukraine "fired a volley of thermobaric missiles at targets" near the city of Avdiivka this weekend.
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