The Ukrainian parliament's calls to the United States to begin weapon supplies to Ukraine suggest that Kiev does not want to conduct peace talks, a Russian lawmaker said.
"The Verkhovna Rada has called on U.S. Congress to accelerate the delivery of military aid and to give Ukraine the status of a special U.S. ally. This indicates that Kyiv does not want to hold peace talks, all of this looks particularly cynical in the context of the upcoming meeting of the Contact Group in Minsk and Normandy format summit," Leonid Slutsky, Chairman of the State Duma's Committee for CIS Affairs, Eurasian Integration and Contacts with Compatriots, told the press on Monday.
These talks can only be successful if the Ukrainian leaders demonstrate the sincere desire to settle the conflict peacefully, to end the fighting and to get back to dialogue, he said. "But what we see in actual fact is a negative background, created knowingly to obstruct all peace initiatives, continuing shelling attacks on cities in Donbas and demands for arms supplies," Slutsky said.
"This indicates that Kiev and its American sponsors are determined to escalate the conflict," he said.
Leader of the Verkhovna Rada's Batkivshchina parliamentary faction Yulia Tymoshenko has proposed setting up a high-level group, comprised of representatives of the president, Cabinet and parliament, and sending it to the United States for talks on smart weapons supplies to Ukraine, earlier reports said The Ukrainian parliament is expected to debate its special address to U.S. Congress, requesting swift shipments of military aid to Kiev.
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