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Ukraine’s president calls Istanbul peace talks ‘positive’

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ISTANBUL, TURKIYE - Ukrainian delegation member Oleksandr Chalyi (4th L), Ukrainian presidential office vice president Mikhail Podolyak (4th R), the national leader of the Crimean Tatar Turkish people and Ukrainian deputy Mustafa Abdulcemil Kirimoglu (5th R), president of the People's Servant Party Davyd Arakhamia (5th L) make a press statement after the peace talks between delegations from Russia and Ukraine at Dolmabahce Presidential Office in Istanbul, Turkiye on March 29, 2022. (Lokman Akkaya - Anadolu Agency)
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Mar 30, 2022 - 01:53 AM

ANKARA (AA) – Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Tuesday that the latest round of peace talks with Russia in Istanbul, Turkiye could be called “positive,” but “the enemy is still on our territory.”

“The signals we hear from the negotiating platform can be called positive,” Zelenskyy said on his Telegram account.

“But these signals do not drown out the ruptures of Russian shells.”

Noting that they see “all the risks” and “no reason to trust the words of certain representatives of a state that continues to fight for our destruction,” the president said “Ukrainians are not naive people. Ukrainians have already learned during these 34 days of invasion and over the past eight years of the war in Donbas that only a concrete result can be trusted.”

The fresh round of talks in Istanbul lasted for three hours, and Russian and Ukrainian negotiators later held separate press briefings to inform the world about the outcome.

While Ukraine has called for several countries, including Turkiye, to be guarantors in a possible future peace deal, Russia has announced that it will significantly decrease military activities in the direction of the Ukrainian cities of Kyiv and Chernihiv to increase trust for future negotiations.

Russia sent troops into Ukraine in what it called a “special military operation” on Feb. 24. The war has been met with international outrage and Western countries have implemented tough financial sanctions on Moscow.

At least 1,179 civilians have been killed in Ukraine and 1,860 injured, according to estimates by the UN, which noted that the true figure is likely far higher.

More than 3.9 million Ukrainians have also fled to several European countries, with millions more displaced inside the country, according to the UN refugee agency.

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