Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenksky said there are "compromises" that Ukraine cannot make in negotiations with Putin.
Zelensky was asked by CNN's Fareed Zakaria about the Russian demands — including that they recognize that Crimea is part of Russia, the two republics in the Donbas are independent republics, and they guarantee that Ukraine will never be a member of NATO. He said, "There are compromises for which we cannot be ready as an independent state."
Zelensky continued: "Any compromises related to our territorial integrity and our sovereignty and the Ukrainian people have spoken about it, they have not greeted Russian soldiers with a bunch of flowers, they have greeted them with bravery, they have greeted them with weapons in their hands."
Zelensky said that Russia "cannot curry favor with the citizens of another country forcibly."
"You cannot just make a president of another country to recognize anything by the use of force," he added.
Some more context: In his interview with CNN, Zelensky said he is ready to negotiate with Russian President Vladimir Putin, but warned that if any negotiation attempts fail, it could mean the fight between the two countries would lead to "a third World War."
“I’m ready for negotiations with him. I was ready for the last two years. And I think that without negotiations, we cannot end this war,” Zelensky told Zakaria in an exclusive interview Sunday morning.