Published On: Thu, Jul 4th, 2024
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Putin ‘smuggles shock peace plan into US’ proposing sharing occupied Crimea with Ukraine | World | News


Vladimir Putin would be prepared for Russia to share sovereignty of Crimea under a new “peace plan” to end the years-long war in Ukraine, it has been claimed.

Sources in Moscow and Kyiv claim the Russian President has already sent interior minister and trusted ally Vladimir Kolokoltsev to the United States with the package of proposals.

Despite being sanctioned by the US, Kolokoltsev arrived in New York on June 26 to take part in UNCOPS-2024, a UN summit of police chiefs.

He was able to attend as his name does not appear on the US Treasury’s list of individuals barred from entering the country, The Kyiv Indepedent reports.

But it’s now claimed this was a “diversionary manoeuvre” which allowed him to travel to America on a VIP plane from Putin’s presidential fleet to transmit the despot’s new demands for a peace deal, according to reports.

Dmitry Gordon, a leading Ukrainian TV journalist, said he learnt details of the prososals from his country’s “intelligence sources”.

Meanwhile, Russian Telegram channel Gosdumskaya – which claims insider sources in Moscow – also reported a similar set of demands from the Kremlin leader.

Ukraine would have to party with huge areas of invaded territory and be barred from its longterm ambition of joing NATO, making it unlikely that Kyiv would countenance the proposal.

“The main purpose of his [Kolokoltsev’s] arrival was to hand over Russia‘s peace plan to the US authorities,” Gordon said, describing it as a plan from Putin “to end the war”.

The US State Department has been approached for comment.

Under the demands, Ukraine must completely withdraw from Donetsk and Luhansk, two regions now partially annexed by Putin’s forces.

Russia would hand over Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Station as well as the nearby town of Enerhodar, and would discuss the possible transfer of Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions back to Kyiv’s control.

The Black Sea pensinusula of Crimea, meanwhile, would be turned into a “specially demilitarised administrative territory with dual subordination to Ukraine and the Russian Federation”.

Ukraine must take on itself legally binding international guarantees, not to block the supply of water to Crimea,” said Gordon, quoting a document.

Putin invaded and annexed Crimea in 2014 claiming its inhabitants were more Russian than Ukrainian, and vowing never to return the territory to Ukrainian hands.

The package also proposes that Ukraine would also control a “demilitarised zone” 62 miles wide along the Dnipro River, the reports claim.

But the move would require Ukraine‘s army to have a legal cap on the number of troops, and for the country to end its push to join NATO.

Gordon suggested the proposed army size is 350,000, while Gosdumskaya Telegram channel said it was 150,000.

However, Putin would not seek to prevent Ukraine joining the European Union. It would also see the West dropping its heavy sanctions on Russian oil and gas, and banking.

According to Gordon, the Russians say the Donetsk and Luhansk regions cannot be transferred under the control of Kyiv as it will cause “the imminent genocide of the population of the territory, a third of which took part in hostilities against Ukraine”.

The US, Russia and Ukraine are yet to officially comment on the alleged back channel contacts regarding Kolokoltsev’s recent visit.

It comes after Putin promised last month to “immediately” order a cease-fire in Ukraine and start negotiations if Kyiv began withdrawing troops from the four regions annexed by Moscow in 2022 and abandoned plans to join the military alliance.

But the proposal was rejected by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky who said it was an ultimatum by Putin to surrender more territory.

Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 with the aim of quickly capturing Kyiv. But despite losing territory to Russian occupation, Ukraine continues to frustrate Putin’s forces more than two years on.



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