Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov. Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs
KYIV (Reuters) – Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov gave Ukraine an ultimatum on Monday to fulfil Moscow’s proposals, including surrendering territory Russia controls, or its army would decide the issue, a day after President Vladimir Putin said he was open to talks.
Kyiv and its Western allies have dismissed Putin’s offer to talk, with his forces battering Ukrainian towns with missiles and rockets and Moscow continuing to demand that Kyiv recognise its conquest of a fifth of the country. Kyiv says it will fight until Russia withdraws.
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Update #2: Lavrov: Ukraine must demilitarize or Russia will do it (AP)
WNU Editor: I feel like I am seeing history repeat itself.
A few weeks before Russia invaded Ukraine in February I saw something that I never saw before from Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov. It was a news clip, and it showed a frustrated Lavrov with the accompanying media report saying that his latest diplomatic effort to convince his Western counterparts to discuss and negotiate over Moscow’s security concerns on Ukraine and NATO were being ignored. I remember that moment very clearly because that is when I started to wonder if my 100% certainty that Russia was not going to invade Ukraine was wrong.
Sadly …. I was wrong. And in hindsight it is clear (at least to me) that this is the reason why Lavrov was frustrated. Because he was probably told by Putin himself that if his diplomatic efforts did not succeed, a military conflict was likely.
And now I am seeing the same thing in play from the Foreign Minister this week. He is giving a warning/ultimatum, and like the last time no one is listening to him.
Here is my prediction. If history is any guide, expect some major Russian military moves in Ukraine in the coming weeks.
Update #3: The Foreign Minister has also issued a warning to the US …. Russia Warns U.S. Against Launching ‘Decapitation Strike’ on Putin (Moscow Times). My guess is that the Kremlin is paying attention to rhetoric like this …. Lindsey Graham Says Ukraine War Won’t End Unless Russians Take Out Putin (Huffington Post).