Zelenskyy: China’s ‘Peace Plan’ Implies Russian Troops Must Leave Ukraine

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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy says he hopes to meet Chinese communist leader Xi Jinping, and that China will urge Russia to end its war if it really believes in the value of sovereignty.

Speaking at a press conference marking the one-year anniversary of the full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Zelenskyy said that meeting Xi would be beneficial for stability and international security.

Zelenskyy’s comments followed China’s release on Feb. 24 of a position paper that outlined China’s desire to be a mediator in the conflict, to which the Ukrainian president expressed cautious optimism.

“China started talking about Ukraine, and I think this is a good thing,” he said.

China widely referred to the document as a “peace plan,” though it offered no solutions to the war and argued that the United Nations should drop all sanctions against Russia.

Zelenskyy said that the whole world likely disagreed with some parts of the document and cautioned that territorial integrity, which the position paper championed, would demand that Russia leave Ukraine once and for all.

“There are some things I disagree with, that I think the entire world disagrees with,” Zelenskyy said of the document.

“But it actually begs the question, what will these words be followed with? Because the steps that are to be taken… this is what’s important. What these steps are going to lead to for us because China is talking about us.”

To that end, Zelenskyy said that China would need to compel Russia to leave Ukraine if it actually believed in what it had written.

“What they are saying looks like respect for territorial integrity,” Zelenskyy said. “It doesn’t mention the country, but it’s our territorial integrity that has been breached.”

“Territorial integrity implies withdrawal of Russian troops. If it’s not there, that means it is not okay with us.”

By Andrew Thornebrooke

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