Ukraine, Russia diplomats to meet on Belarus border

The meeting news came shortly after Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered his nuclear forces put on high alert

February 27, 2022 08:44 pm | Updated 08:44 pm IST - KYIV, Ukraine:

A Ukrainian soldier walks past debris of a burning military truck, on a street in Kyiv, Ukraine on February 26, 2022.

A Ukrainian soldier walks past debris of a burning military truck, on a street in Kyiv, Ukraine on February 26, 2022. | Photo Credit: AP

The office of Ukraine's president has confirmed that a delegation will meet with Russian officials as Moscow’s troops draw closer to Kyiv.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy office said on the Telegram messaging app that the two sides would meet at an unspecified location on the Belarusian border and did not give a precise time for the meeting.

The announcement on Sunday came hours after Russia announced that its delegation had flown to Belarus to await talks. Ukrainian officials initially rejected the move, saying any talks should take place elsewhere than Belarus, where Russia placed a large contingent of troops before it invaded Ukraine starting Thursday.

The meeting news came shortly after President Vladimir Putin ordered Russian nuclear forces put on high alert in response to what he called “aggressive statements” by leading NATO powers.

Mr. Zelenskyy’s office said Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, a Putin ally, “has taken responsibility for ensuring that all planes, helicopters and missiles stationed on Belarusian territory remain on the ground during the Ukrainian delegation’s travel, talks and return.“

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