Scholz says Putin still doesn't see invading Ukraine as 'mistake'

AFP , Wednesday 14 Sep 2022

Vladimir Putin still believes he was right to launch an invasion of Ukraine, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said Wednesday after a 90-minute-long telephone call with the Russian president.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, speaks during a news conference after his meeting with Georgia s Prime Minister Garibashvili at the Federal Chancellery on Wednesday, Sept. 14, 2022 in Berlin. AP


"Sadly, I cannot tell you that the impression has grown that it was a mistake to begin this war," Scholz told journalists a day after his exchange with Putin.

"And there was no indication that new attitudes are emerging," the German leader added at a joint press conference with his Georgian counterpart, Irakli Garibashvili.

In the call Tuesday with Putin, Scholz urged the Russian leader to seek a diplomatic solution "based on a ceasefire, a complete withdrawal of Russian forces and respect for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the Ukraine".

The exit of Russian troops from Ukraine was the only way for "peace to have a chance in the region", Scholz said Wednesday.

While Putin's positions did not appear to have shifted, the German chancellor said it was necessary to remain in conversation with the Russian leader.

"It is right to speak with each other and to say what there is to say on this subject," Scholz said.

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