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Zelensky admits no direct support for Kiev’s stance on Ukraine in China

"As for the peace initiative put forward by China, we are grateful to other countries for their efforts, but our own peace formula, our own initiative remains our priority," the Ukrainian president said

SEOUL, May 30. /TASS/. China "does not directly support" Kiev’s stance on Ukraine, while Kiev prioritizes its own `peace initiatives’, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky said in an interview with South Korea’s Chosun Ilbo daily, published on Tuesday.

"It is true, China does not directly support Ukraine’s position. As for the peace initiative put forward by China, we are grateful to other countries for their efforts, but, as we have said, our own peace formula, our own initiative remains our priority," Zelensky said, when asked if Beijing could be a success as a mediator in the situation in Ukraine. China’s participation would be useful to Kiev, if Beijing called for the withdrawal of Russian troops "from Ukraine altogether," Zelensky added.

The Ukrainian leader also discussed the prospects for cooperation with the Republic of Korea after the conflict ends. "The production of lithium batteries could look lucrative in the future, given Ukraine’s resources and South Korea’s technological potential," Zelensky said. "We could even make goods related to lithium mining in Ukraine. We have lithium production facilities left from the Soviet Union," he added.

According to Zelensky, Kiev seeks cooperation in green energy, and he said ties could be established in security and the defense industry, as well as in advance technology and in the cyber realm. South Korea’s experience in post-war rebuilding would also be useful to Ukraine, he said.


Peace initiatives from Beijing, Kiev


In April, Chinese leader Xi Jinping held his first telephone conversation with Zelensky since Russia began its special military operation in Ukraine. He affirmed that Beijing was ready to contribute to negotiations to end the conflict.

According to the Chinese Foreign Ministry, China’s Special Representative for Eurasian Affairs Li Hui explained Beijing’s position on the Ukrainian crisis during his visit to Ukraine in May and underlined that China would stick to a set of four principles proposed by Xi.

Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova earlier described Zelensky’s so-called peace plan as yet another US manual on how to ignite a conflict in Europe. She also said that Moscow could see Beijing’s readiness to initiate negotiations on Ukraine but that the Washington-led Kiev regime was unlikely to give an appropriate response to calls for peace.