Ukrainian President Says Possibility of Full-On War With Russia Exists
08:48 GMT 10.09.2021 (Updated: 09:50 GMT 10.09.2021)
© AP Photo / Ronald ZakPresident of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky addresses the media at a joint press conference with Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz after their meeting at the federal chancellery in Vienna, Austria, Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2020.
© AP Photo / Ronald Zak
KIEV (Sputnik) - Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on 10 September that there was a possibility of a war with Russia, but that would be "the biggest mistake" on Russia's part.
"I think there could be [a full-on war with Russia] ... There is some potential there. I think it would be the biggest mistake Russia could make, there would never be any neighborly relations between Russia, Ukraine, Belarus after that," Zelenskyy said during YES Brainstorming forum in Kiev.
When asked about Russian President Vladimir Putin, Zelenskyy said he had "no time to think about him."
"No offense to him and his country. I am more interested in whether we can have a substantive meeting," Zelenskyy said, adding that he would like that summit to be "more substantive than what happened at the first meeting of the Normandy format."
Earlier this month, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said that Kiev was ready to host a meeting of the two presidents, but it seemed as if Moscow was trying to avoid the summit.
The Russian presidential spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, has said that Putin is ready to meet with Zelenskyy because the relationship between the two countries needs improving. At the same time, Peskov has stressed that Putin would not discuss Crimea with the head of another country.
The relationship between Ukraine and Russia has been strained since 2014, when Kiev's conflict with two self-proclaimed republics in the east of Ukraine began. Kiev has repeatedly accused Russia of interfering in Ukraine's internal affairs. Russia has rejected the accusations and stressed that it is not a party to Ukraine's internal conflict.
Kremlin Regrets Zelensky’s Statement About Possibility of Ukraine-Russia War
The Kremlin regrets a statement made by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy about the possibility of a war between Ukraine and Russia, spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on 10 September.
"With regret," Peskov said when asked how the Kremlin views the Ukrainian president’s statement.
Crimea reunified with Russia after a referendum in 2014, but Kiev continues to consider it as part of Ukraine. Russian officials have repeatedly indicated that the Crimean peninsula's residents voted to rejoin Russia in accordance with international laws.