Russia-Ukraine war: UN chief to meet Putin, Zelenskyy next week
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres will reportedly meet Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy next week. This comes as the Russia-Ukraine war is set to complete two months on Sunday. He will make a personal appeal to Putin to end the conflict as Moscow prepares to expand its military ambitions in southern Ukraine—days after shifting focus from Kyiv to the east.
Why does this story matter?
- The development came as the Russia-Ukraine war entered its 59th day on Saturday.
- Meanwhile, on Friday, Russian and Ukrainian negotiators held yet another round of talks.
- However, Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov reportedly said diplomatic efforts to end the war were still on hold.
- The conflict has displaced over a quarter of Ukraine's 44 million population, destroyed multiple cities, and killed or injured thousands.
Statement from United Nations on Guterres's visits
The UN Secretary-General will travel to Moscow for a meeting with Russian President Putin on Tuesday. "He hopes to talk about what can be done to bring peace to Ukraine urgently," said the UN Secretary-General's Associate Spokesperson, Eri Kaneko. Later on Thursday, Guterres will meet with Ukrainian President Zelenskyy and the war-torn country's foreign minister, the UN said in a statement.
Various leaders met Putin, Zelenskyy, appealing for peace
During both his visits, Guterres intends to discuss "steps that can be taken right now" to end the war and "help people get to safety." To recall, European Commission's President Ursula von der Leyen and British PM Boris Johnson earlier visited Ukraine to express their solidarity with it. Meanwhile, Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer met with Putin earlier this month to call for a "ceasefire."
What's currently happening at ground zero of war?
Russia on Friday declared that it would fight until it "takes control over all [of] east and south of Ukraine." The country's Defence Ministry claimed that its forces had taken control of a large arms depot in Kharkiv. According to Ukraine, Russian forces have intensified attacks along the entire eastern frontline and are planning an attack in the Kharkiv region—to the north of Donbas.