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Ukraine’s Zelensky signs decree to rule out negotiation with Russia’s Vladimir Putin as ‘impossible’


Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Tuesday signed a decree formally announcing the “impossible” prospect of peace negotiations between Ukraine and Russian President Vladimir Putin. The Ukrainian President still left the door open for negotiations with Russia, but that will not be conducted with Putin as its President.

The decree came after Vladimir Putin announced four occupied Ukrainian regions as part of Russia on Friday. He made that announcement after an overwhelming majority of the four regions reportedly “chose” to become part of Russia in a referendum. The referendum was rejected by Kyiv and West, who called it a sham conducted at gunpoint.

“He (Putin) does not know what dignity and honesty are. Therefore, we are ready for a dialogue with Russia, but with another president of Russia,” Zelensky said on Friday.

Ukrainian forces now seem to be focusing on pushing the Russian Army out of these annexed areas. They have broken through the Russian defenses in the important southern Kherson area and are now rapidly attacking towards the east, seizing back more and more territories annexed by Russia.

“It’s tense, let’s put it that way,” Vladimir Saldo, the Russian-installed head of Ukraine’s Kherson region, said on state television.

“Where the Kakhovka (reservoir) is, there is a settlement called Dudchany it is in this area that there is a breakthrough and there are settlements taken by Ukrainian troops,” he said.

Ukraine’s counter-offensive against Russia has been surprising to many defense experts who predicted the fall of Ukraine within days of the Russian invasion. Ukraine has taken back more than 4000 square miles of territories from Russia including Izium and Kupiansk, two strategically important towns in the northeast that served as logistical hubs for Russian forces.

According to the New York Times, American and British intelligence officials were directly involved in the planning of the Ukrainian counter-offensive. US intelligence agencies also provided Ukraine with information on Russia’s weak defense links.

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