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West touting peace in Ukraine after country’s military suffered fiasco — Russian diplomat

Gennady Gatilov said Russia "has never rejected peace initiatives to resolve conflicts," adding that Moscow has used such initiatives "both after the bloody Ukrainian coup in 2014 and as part of the Minsk agreements"

GENEVA, April 11. /TASS/. The West is starting to discuss peace proposals for Ukraine as the country’s military has built up a track record of failures, said Gennady Gatilov, Russia's envoy to the UN office and other international organizations in Geneva.

He was commenting on the Swiss plan to hold a conference on Ukraine in Burgenstock in June.

"Accustomed to betting exclusively on forceful methods of resolving issues, Washington and Brussels in their characteristic manner have allowed the situation to worsen to such an extent that now their Kiev puppets literally have to be rescued. It is only after a considerable amount of time, having seen proof of the failures of the Ukrainian Armed Forces and unprecedented corruption in Ukraine, that the West is starting to talk about peaceful initiatives," Gatilov said in a commentary posted to the Russian diplomatic mission's Telegram channel.

The diplomat said Russia "has never rejected peace initiatives to resolve conflicts." Moscow has consistently used such initiatives "both after the bloody Ukrainian coup in 2014 and as part of the Minsk agreements, which, as the West has now admitted, were just a cover to prepare the Kiev regime for military operations against Russia."

"Diplomacy was rejected by the Western handlers of [Ukrainian President Vladimir] Zelensky in April 2022, when the conflict, which had escalated to an 'acute' stage, could have been resolved promptly as concrete steps in this regard were being taken then in Istanbul," Gatilov said.

The Swiss Confederation, as it plans to host a "peace summit on Ukraine" in June, is trying to regain its reputation as an honest broker and the center of European diplomacy, the envoy continued. Russia has never rejected the search for political solutions. But Moscow believes that "relevant negotiations should not be held on the basis of delusional unilateral ultimatums, but should take into account the vital interests and legitimate security concerns of all parties concerned, including Russia, as well as the real situation on the ground, he said.

"In addition, assuming such meetings should be held, they should certainly be held on the territory of neutral mediator countries. And then it makes sense to ask this question: ‘What does Switzerland have to do with anything?’" Gatilov said.

The Swiss-hosted conference

At a news conference in Bern on April 10, Swiss Foreign Minister Ignazio Cassis said that Russia would not participate in the Burgenstock conference. However, he noted that "no peace process can take place without Russia, even if it is not present at the first meeting." According to the Swiss broadcaster RTS, the conference will be held from June 15-16. But Swiss officials haven’t named any specific dates yet.