Russia-Ukraine War

Zelenskyy Says Ukraine Ready to Discuss Deal With Russia

Zelenskyy also repeated his call for direct talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin

In this image from video provided by the Ukrainian Presidential Press Office, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy speaks from Kyiv, Ukraine, on Monday, March 21, 2022.
Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said late Monday he was prepared to discuss a commitment from Ukraine not to seek NATO membership in exchange for a cease-fire, the withdrawal of Russian troops and a guarantee of Ukraine’s security.

“It’s a compromise for everyone: for the West, which doesn’t know what to do with us with regard to NATO, for Ukraine, which wants security guarantees, and for Russia, which doesn’t want further NATO expansion,” Zelenskyy said late Monday in an interview with Ukrainian television channels.

He also repeated his call for direct talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Unless he meets with Putin, it is impossible to understand whether Russia even wants to stop the war, Zelenskyy said.

More than 2.8 million people have evacuated Ukraine since Russia's invasion began, and 1.7 million have taken refuge in Poland, Ukraine's western neighbor. Poland is trying to disperse the large crowds by adding more train routes heading west into Europe, like to Germany and the Czech Republic. But as Jay Gray shows you from the Polish-Ukrainian border region, many people want to stay near Ukraine in case they need to go back, or catch up with relatives who haven't crossed yet.

Zelenskyy said that Kyiv will be ready to discuss the status of Crimea and the eastern Donbas region held by Russian-backed separatists after a cease-fire and steps toward providing security guarantees.

This is a live update. Click here for complete coverage of the crisis in Ukraine.

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