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The Russia-Ukraine conflict: the day of the ultimatum for Mariupol

“Ukraine cannot accept any ultimatum from Russia. They will have to destroy us all, only then will their ultimatums be respected,” President Volodimir Zelensky said in an interview with regional public media.


Almost four weeks after the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the expectation this Monday is focused on Moscow’s ultimatum to the government of that country to order the withdrawal of its military from the city of Mariupol. Kyiv rejected this imposition although its troops there are isolated due to the impossibility of sending reinforcements.


Ukrainian President Volodimir Zelenski said that all the issues would be on the table if his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, agrees to talk about the war, after warning that his country would be “destroyed” before surrendering.

Almost a month after the start of the conflict, there has been little progress in the talks between the two parties, which is why Zelensky has urged speaking directly with Putin. On Monday he insisted that a meeting with Putin, “in whatever format,” is crucial to ending the war.

“If I have this opportunity and Russia has the desire, we could address all issues,” he told Ukrainian journalists.

“Would we solve everything there? No, but there is a possibility that we can at least partially stop the war,” he added.

Zelensky said he would be willing to discuss the Russian-occupied Crimean peninsula and pro-Russian breakaway areas in the eastern Donbas region, though he insisted they should be returned to Ukraine.

“In the first meeting with the president of Russia, I am ready to address these issues,” he declared, after indicating that any agreement on “historic” changes would be submitted to a national referendum.

He insisted that Ukraine “already understood” that it cannot join NATO, but added that its compatriots cannot simply “hand over” the capital or the cities of Kharkiv and Mariupol, a heavily bombed port.

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Written by Christina d'souza

Proofreader, editor, journalist. I have been doing my favourite thing for more than six years.


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