The White House voiced support Wednesday for a proposed summit to work toward peace in Ukraine, even if Russia is not involved.
“We've been talking to the Ukrainians for many, many months now,” National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications John Kirby said. “President Zelensky has a 10-point proposal for what he calls a just peace – and we're helping trying to work with his team to help actualize that.”
The United States supports “moves toward peace,” but any proposal must have the support of the Ukrainian president to be “credible and sustainable,” he said. Russia’s current assault on Ukraine was “not the act of the nation that has any serious design on diplomacy right now," he added.
The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday that Ukraine and its allies were planning a peace summit for global leaders without Russian involvement. Asked what the value was in a summit like that without Russia’s participation, Kirby responded that "you've got to work with Ukrainians" before anything else.
“But where and when, or even if the Russians can be brought to the table, that's got to be President Zelensky, his decision,” Kirby said.
“He has to be ready to sit down and talk and the conditions have to be amenable to him, and then you can move forward with seeing whether the Russians can be a part of that,” Kirby said.
He added that Putin “has shown absolutely zero inclination” for peace, calling whether Russia should be at the table a “great academic question.”