Putin says he is willing to negotiate, but attacks continue

kyiv, Ukraine (HPD) — Russian President Vladimir Putin has declared that his country is ready to enter into negotiations to end the war in Ukraine, despite Russian forces continuing to shell Ukrainian territory — a sign that peace is not imminent. .

In a television interview, parts of which were broadcast on Sunday, Putin said that Russia is “ready to negotiate some acceptable outcomes with all participants in this process.”

He asserted that “it is not us who are refusing to negotiate, it is them,” the same position the Kremlin has taken in recent months as its 10-month-old invasion of Ukraine is losing momentum.

The Russian president also reiterated his argument that Russia “had no choice” and “is acting in the right direction.”

“We are defending our national interests, the interests of our citizens, of our people,” he said.

The comments come as Russia continues its attacks on Ukraine. An anti-aircraft alert was issued twice for all of Ukraine on Sunday and three missiles fell on Kramatorsk in the partially occupied Donetsk area in the afternoon, local officials said.

The missiles hit an industrial sector of the city and there were no casualties, Ukrainian Donetsk Governor Pavlo Kyrylenko said. He added that the town of Avdiivka was also hit by six artillery waves on Sunday and a woman was injured there.

Meanwhile in the city of Bakhmut, where heavy fighting has raged in recent weeks, Russian forces are struggling trying to keep up the momentum of their offensive, a US-based think tank reported.

The Institute for the Study of War reported that “the pace of the advance of Russian forces in the Bakhmut area has probably slowed in recent days, although it is too early to say whether the Russian attempt to take Bakhmut has been concluded.”

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