Russia-Ukraine Peace Talks Begin

Peace talks began today between Kyiv and Moscow at the Belarus border while Russia continues its assault on Ukraine.

Ukraine’s Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov is leading the Ukraine delegation. Reznikov said he is seeking an immediate ceasefire and the immediate withdrawal of Russian troops out of Ukraine. 

Today marked the fifth day of Russia’s war on Ukraine. Air raid sirens sounded across the country and strikes were reported in multiple cities, including capital city Kyiv, as well as Kharkiv, Zhytomyr, Zaporizhzhia, and Chernihiv. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin put his nuclear forces on high alert on Sunday, causing widespread concern in Ukraine and among the international community over potential nuclear warfare.

Belarus held a referendum yesterday on proposed changes to the country’s constitution in order to end its status as a nuclear-free zone. This could open up the way for Russian nuclear weapons to be deployed within the country. Dictator Alexander Lukashenko said today that it had won the referendum. It also comes amid reports that Belarus has sent troops to join the war and support Russia. 

Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky addressed the nation and the world in a video message posted on Telegram today. Zelensky said that when he ran for the presidency, he had said each Ukrainian was the president, and now, everyone is a warrior.  

Zelinsky called on the European Union to immediately allow Ukraine to join the EU under a new special procedure. Zelensky said that the next 24 hours would be a crucial period for the country. 

The European Commission President Ursula von Der Leyen said that the EU wants Ukraine to join, stating in an interview that Ukraine was “one of us” and that the EU wants them to be a part of the bloc.

However, the decision to admit a country to the EU lies with all existing member countries. They do not always agree with the Commission’s views. Technically Ukraine is not at the moment an official candidate for EU accession talks. 

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