Ukraine has to sit down with Russia for a negotiated peace and give up ambitions to recapture lost land, a Hungarian official has argued.
Efforts to breach Russian defences in the south of Ukraine have failed to achieve signification results after three months of brutal fighting.
While the Ukrainian government has hailed the recent recapture of Robotyne as a sign a breakthrough is coming, the village sits north of the first line of Russia’s main defensive network.
Top Hungarian official Gergely Gulyas believes that the Ukrainian army’s lack of progress is a sure sign that a negotiated peace is the only outcome of the war with Russia.
Gulyas suggested that a deal between Moscow and Kyiv would see the latter agree to never join NATO and provide security guarantees.
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He said during a talk to students: “In the long term, peacekeepers and numerous similar solutions could guarantee peace in Ukraine.
“The Western world supporting Ukraine must give security guarantees to Russia, but certainly not NATO membership to the Ukrainians.”
Gulyas suggested that the US would need to be actively involved in the talks between Ukraine and Russia.
He argued: “Peace talks will only work if Washington engages with Moscow and Kyiv.”
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Ukraine’s principal offensive efforts are concentrated in the southern region, as they progressively approach the coastlines of the Sea of Azov, seemingly with the purpose of cutting the land connection to the Crimean Peninsula, which Russia annexed in 2014.
This manoeuvre effectively divides Russian-occupied territory in southern Ukraine into two sections, limiting Moscow’s supply channels.
Deputy Defence Minister Hanna Maliar urged observers to evaluate Ukrainian progress not in terms of kilometres or metres, but rather by the fact that they are succeeding in the face of adversity.
While attempting to keep Ukrainian forces engaged in the mostly stationary northeastern front, Russia has also had the time to strengthen its defences in the south, including extensive mine-laying operations, according to Ukrainian officials.
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Kyiv’s advances in that direction have been hampered by these reinforced locations. Furthermore, the Ukrainian forces suffer personnel, air support, and artillery limits.
The anticipated entrance of the autumn rainy season adds urgency to an already difficult struggle, as the muddy terrain will limit Kyiv’s army and heavy machinery movement.
In the southern theatre, Ukrainian troops have recently had better luck bursting past Russian defences. Ukraine has advanced 7km (4.3miles) in the southern Zaporizhzhia area since the start of their counteroffensive.
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