Russian President Vladimir Putin told Tucker Carlson during their anticipated sit-down interview at the Kremlin that, in the spring of 2022, peace between Russia and Ukraine was on the table – but one high-profile world leader reportedly shot it down.
According to Putin, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has the capacity to negotiate a peace treaty with Russia right now if he truly wants to. However, the Russian president gave a critical assessment of the Ukrainian leader’s authority.
When asked if Zelensky could potentially reach out and negotiate with Russia, Putin responded, “Why not? He considers himself head of state, he won the elections – although we believe in Russia that the coup d’etat is the primary source of power for everything that happened after 2014 and in this sense, even today, government is flawed.”
He continued, “But he [Zelensky] considers himself the president and he is recognized by the United States, all of Europe and practically the rest of the world in such a capacity.”
Putin then made a shocking statement, in which he alleged that a peace treaty was on the table in Istanbul, which would have been in March 2022.
He said, “We negotiated with Ukraine in Istanbul, we agreed. He was aware of this, he even put his preliminary signature on the document I am telling you about. But then he publicly stated to the whole world, ‘We were ready to sign this document, but Mr. Johnson, then the Prime Minister of Great Britain, came and dissuaded us from doing this, saying it was better to fight Russia – and we agreed with this proposal.’”
This is not the first time that Putin has stated that a peace treaty was on the table.
In 2023, Mint reported that Putin showed a draft of what appeared to be a 2022 peace treaty during a meeting with African Union leaders. The outlet reported that Putin slammed Kyiv for throwing the treaty into the “garbage of history.”
President Putin explained that Zelensky’s alleged deference to a European leader like Boris Johnson was “ridiculous.” He stated, “And the fact that they obey the demand or persuasion of Mr. Johnson, the former Prime Minister of Great Britain, seems ridiculous and very sad to me.”
As of Friday morning, Tucker Carlson’s X-based interview with Vladimir Putin had hit nearly 125 million views and counting.