MOSCOW, November 28. /TASS/. Kiev could have saved hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian lives if it had signed a peace treaty with Moscow last year, Russian presidential aide Vladimir Medinsky said.
"I am deeply convinced that if Kiev had signed a peace treaty then on mutually acceptable terms, it would have thereby saved the lives of hundreds of thousands of its soldiers. But [Ukrainian President Vladimir] Zelensky chose war," Medinsky told reporters.
The official, who led the Russian delegation at the peace treaty talks with Ukraine in 2022, was commenting on the recent revelations from David Arahamiya, a senior member of the pro-presidential Servant of the People party in the Ukrainian parliament. When asked why Kiev refused to continue talks with Russia in 2022, Arahamiya said former UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, when he came to Kiev at the time, advised against signing anything with Russia and urged officials to carry on with the hostilities.
"These revelations by Arahamiya, of course, do him credit. I will only add that after April 15, when the preliminary text of the peace treaty was ready, not only Boris Johnson came to Kiev, but the main 'masters' - as far as I remember, the head of the US State Department and the Pentagon chief - also flew to Kiev in a hurry. Also, Arahamiya admitted that some group of advisers had been formed, who essentially convinced Zelensky not to sign the peace treaty," Medinsky said. "Thus, the chance to end the war was missed."