Russia-Ukraine negotiations interrupted by Westerners, says ex-mediator Bennett – RT in French
The former Israeli prime minister, a former mediator between kyiv and Moscow, reported that Western countries had broken off the negotiation process. He stressed that his action was coordinated with several countries including the United States and France.
Former Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett played a mediating role between kyiv and Moscow in March 2022, shortly after the launch of the Russian offensive in Ukraine. In a long interview with the Israeli channel Channel 12 broadcast on February 4, he testified to what he had been able to observe during this mission, which he specifies was coordinated with the United States, Germany and France. . According to him, it was the Western countries that broke off the peace negotiations between the two countries.
During this interview, Naftali Bennett reports that he went to Moscow in early March 2022 before meeting in turn with Russian and Ukrainian leaders Vladimir Putin and Volodymyr Zelensky, but also with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and with American, French and British officials.
Its objective was clear: to negotiate a peace agreement, while Vladimir Putin had announced a few days earlier the launch of a “special military operation” aimed, according to Moscow, at “demilitarizing” and “denazifying” Ukraine.
Naftali Bennett claims to have obtained, as part of his mediation, the assurance that Vladimir Putin would not eliminate the Ukrainian leader, who was then hiding in a bunker for fear of being assassinated, as the Israeli official recounts. Volodymyr Zelensky, for his part, would have made the concession of no longer seeking to have Ukraine join NATO. As his mission as a mediator bore fruit with the continuation of peace negotiations in Belarus in March, the former Prime Minister recalls: “I had the impression that they both wanted [la Russie et l’Ukraine] a ceasefire.”
But the outcome will ultimately be quite different, with the continuation of the conflict to this day. “I think there was a legitimate decision by Westerners to continue hitting Putin,” testifies Naftali Bennett. And to clarify that as a mediator, he had not acted as he wished in a personal capacity: “Everything I did was coordinated with the United States, Germany and France.”
He concluded, when asked by the journalist about the blocking of the negotiation process: “They blocked it and I thought they were wrong.” Naftali Bennett nevertheless considered that it was too early to judge with hindsight the advantages or disadvantages of this approach of Western countries.