British Prime Minister Boris Johnson told his cabinet on Tuesday that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky shouldn’t be pressured into a “bad peace” with Russia to end the fighting in Ukraine.
“He said it was vital that President Zelenskiy was not pressured into accepting a bad peace, noting that bad peace deals do not last. He said the world must avoid any outcome where Putin’s unwarranted aggression appears to have paid off,” a spokesman for Johnson told reporters.
The UK has been one of the more hawkish NATO members in the West’s response to Russia’s war in Ukraine and has discouraged peace talks between the warring parties. Johnson had previously urged Ukraine not to negotiate with Russia.
Johnson’s warning of a “bad peace” came after former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger said Ukraine should cede territory to Russia to achieve peace, an idea Ukrainian officials have rejected. Earlier in the war, Russia said its demands for a ceasefire included Ukraine dropping its claim to Crimea and recognizing the independence of the Donbas republics.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky reiterated on Tuesday his stance on Russia’s demands concerning Crimea and the Donbas. “We have already lost too many people to simply cede our territory,” he said. “We have to achieve a full de-occupation of our entire territory.”
As the war grinds on, Russia has been making slow but steady gains in the east and Ukrainian forces have been taking heavy losses. Zelensky recently said Ukraine is losing between 60 and 100 soldiers each day.