The Ukrainian liberation of Kherson “was a significant, significant victory for Ukraine,” President Joe Biden told reporters traveling with him to the G20 summit in Bali Monday. He emphasized that any negotiations towards a ceasefire will require Ukraine have a seat at the table.
“First of all, it was a significant, significant victory for Ukraine – a significant victory – and I can do nothing but applaud the courage, determination and capacity of Ukrainian people and Ukrainian military. I mean, they’ve really been amazing,” Biden said. “I’ve been very clear that we’re going to continue to provide the capability for the Ukrainian people to defend themselves – and we are not going to engage in any negotiation. There’s nothing about Ukraine without Ukraine, this is a decision Ukraine has to make.”
During a news conference earlier Monday, Oleh Nikolenko, spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, said that Russia is “in no position” to be setting rules for negotiations.
“The peace formula for Ukraine remains unchanged: Immediate cessation of the war, withdrawal of all Russian troops, restoration of Ukrainian territorial integrity, damages reimbursement and provision of effective guarantees of non-repetition of aggression,” Nikolenko said.
Still, Biden said Monday in Bali, he believes hostilities in the region will “slow down a bit because of the winter months, and the inability to move as well, as easily around the country,” later adding he remains confident “that Russia will not occupy or defend Ukraine as they intended from the beginning.”