Ukraine’s president said the example of Yevgeny Prigozhin, the Russian mercenary leader who died in a plane crash last month, shows what happens when you try to make a deal with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Ukraine’s counteroffensive so far has resulted in only modest gains, but Volodymyr Zelensky told CNN he rejected suggestions it was time to negotiate peace with the Kremlin.
“When you want to have a compromise or a dialogue with somebody, you cannot do it with a liar,” Zelensky told CNN’s Fareed Zakaria.
The Wagner leader’s fiery end, after apparently receiving promises over his freedom to continue operating, just weeks after leading a revolt against Putin’s handling of the war, was a warning to be heeded, Zelensky suggested.
While the United States and other key Ukrainian allies continue to supply weapons to Kyiv, stressing that conditions to pursue a “just and durable” peace are not yet in place, several other prominent world leaders, such as Brazil’s Luiz Inacio Lula Da Silva, have put the onus on Ukraine to end the war.
Ukraine’s leader pointed to examples of other countries that have been attacked by Russian soldiers and continue to be partly occupied by Moscow, as support for his position.
“Did you see any compromise from Putin on other issues? With Georgia? With Moldova?” Zelensky asked rhetorically.