President of Russia – said Vladimir Putin in an interview with state television on Sunday, he said Moscow wanted to negotiate, even as Ukrainian cities were hit by rockets over the Christmas weekend.
“We are ready to negotiate with all interested parties on acceptable solutions, but it depends on them – we are not refusing negotiations, but they are,” Putin said.
Counselor Mikhail Padalyak rejected the claims President of Ukraine Vladimir Zelenskywho stated that “Putin needs to come back to reality.”
“Russia single-handedly attacked Ukraine and is killing citizens. There are no other “countries, motives, geopolitics,” Padalyak wrote on Twitter. “Russia does not want negotiations, but tries to avoid responsibility.”
Kherson, which was captured by Russia in the first days of the invasion, but was liberated Ukrainian forces was bombed last month on Christmas Eve, killing at least 10 people and injuring dozens.
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Other Ukrainian cities have also been hit by shelling in recent months, as well as the country’s energy infrastructure.
Zelensky, who spoke US Congress during a visit to Washington, DC, this week, urged Ukrainians to pay attention to the air alert in the coming days.
“There are only a few days left this year. We need to be aware that our enemy will try to make this time dark and difficult for us,” Zelensky said at Christmas. “Russia has lost everything it could this year. But she is trying to compensate for her losses with the gloating of her propagandists after the missile attacks on our country, on our energy industry.”
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Both chambers of Congress approved a $45 billion aid package for Ukraine after Zelensky’s visit, sending the bill to President Biden’s desk.
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Putin, meanwhile, on Sunday accused the West of trying to dismantle Russia.
“Actually, the fundamental thing here is the policy of our geopolitical opponents, which is aimed at splitting Russia, historical Russia,” Putin said.
Reuters contributed to this report.