Ukraine Has “Essentially Agreed” to Core Russian Demands of Not Joining NATO, Says Kremlin

from Zero Hedge

Russian attacks and shelling have reportedly continued near Kiev and the Chernihiv, following Tuesday’s Kremlin declaration that it would draw down some units in these areas coming off negotiations with Ukraine in Istanbul, something met with skepticism by NATO and the Pentagon.

The Kremlin further cited “no breakthroughs” from the talks after a draft ceasefire deal was said to be on the table, and amid generally positive international headlines and market reaction. A statement said additionally that “much work remains”. The US had called observed troop removals near Kiev a tactical redeployment and not in truth de-escalation.

According to Bloomberg citing a Russian source: “De-escalation does not mean a cease-fire or complete withdrawal of troops from around Kyiv, said a person close to the Kremlin.” The report says further, “Moscow’s likely war goals now are to take two eastern provinces, together with a land corridor from the Russian border to the Crimean peninsula, which Russia annexed in 2014, the person said.”

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