Zelenskyy Seeks Biden and Xi's Involvement in Peace Summit to End Ukrainian Crisis

“Please, show your leadership in advancing the peace."

by Sead Dedovic
Zelenskyy Seeks Biden and Xi's Involvement in Peace Summit to End Ukrainian Crisis
© Sean Gallup/Getty Images News

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has invited U.S. President Joe Biden and Chinese leader Xi Jinping to join a peace summit, following over two years since the start of Russia's offensive in Ukraine. Recent significant advances by Russian forces on the frontlines have been alarming for Ukrainians, including President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. 

Ukraine's political leadership hopes that the meeting in Switzerland next month could initiate certain changes. The intention of this summit is for Russians and Vladimir Putin to understand the support Ukraine has and to find the best solution for Ukrainians, ultimately bringing an end to the war. 

Volodymyr Zelenskyy has clearly invited the two great leaders to join this summit via video call. He believes that in doing so, they will demonstrate to the world their intentions to end the war in Ukraine.

“I am appealing to the leaders of the world who are still aside from the global efforts of the Global Peace Summit — to President Biden, the leader of the United States, and to President Xi, the leader of China,” he said, as quoted by NBC.

Although it has been discussed for months that this war could come to an end, Zelenskyy believes there must be readiness for this war to finally end. He emphasizes that the point is not to partially halt Russia's attacks or to achieve a short-lived peace, but to end everything once and for all.

“Please, show your leadership in advancing the peace — the real peace and not just a pause between the strikes.."- Zelenskyy continued.

The Ukrainian president is also fearful of Russian progress, considering that the Ukrainian army is facing issues with armament while awaiting assistance from the US, which should arrive soon. Zelenskyy has confirmed that Russians are preparing for a new offensive in Kharkiv. What may reassure Ukrainians is that their army is managing to provide strong resistance in some areas, but they are aware that Russians will not easily abandon their intentions. The offensive Russia is preparing is a red alert for everyone. It will be interesting to see what response Ukrainians will have.

“Russia is preparing for offensive actions also 90 km (55 miles) north-west from here [Kharkiv]. They gather another group of troops near our border,“ Zelenskyy said. 

Volodymr Zelenskyy and Joe Biden
Volodymr Zelenskyy and Joe Biden© Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images News

The Ukrainian president expects the summit to demonstrate the world's readiness to halt the chaos. His intention is not to declare a ceasefire, considering that he expects Russians to disregard such agreements as they have done so far. The Ukrainian president has shown skepticism numerous times before regarding promises from Russian leaders, having been 'burned' several times. Zelenskyy seems to have lost optimism that finding common ground with Russians is truly possible.

“Summit that will show who in the world really wants to end the war and not just claim the ceasefire which will inevitably be broken by Russian rockets and artillery just like as it was dozens, dozens of times before,” Zelenskyy said.

Vladimir Putin reacts

Putin suggests that Western support for Zelenskyy's legitimacy, particularly in upcoming conferences like the Swiss-hosted one, is just symbolic and lacks legal value. He emphasizes the need for peace negotiations based on mutual understanding rather than ultimatums, highlighting the importance of legally binding agreements with legitimate Ukrainian authorities.

"If it gets to that point, we will need of course to understand who we should and can deal with, to arrive at signing legally binding documents. And then we must be fully sure we are dealing with legitimate (Ukrainian) authorities," Putin said.

President of Russia Vladimir Putin and Minister of defense of Russia Sergey Shoigu attends the Victory Parade
President of Russia Vladimir Putin and Minister of defense of Russia Sergey Shoigu attends the Victory Parade© Alexander Aksakov / Getty Images

Vladimir Putin seems ready for negotiations, aiming to finally end this chaos. However, Zelenskyy and other key Ukrainians are uncertain about how genuinely committed the Russian president is to such talks. They believe that he may want peace to some extent, but without any compromise and with most things in his favor. This is not how Ukrainians envision achieving peace. Both sides cannot agree on many points, making it really difficult to expect any peace in such an atmosphere. Someone will have to give in if they want peace to remain a reality in this Eastern country.

However, Putin's remarks are likely to be interpreted by Ukraine and its Western allies as further evidence of his hesitation to engage in real peace talks. Zelenskyy has consistently rejected negotiations on Putin's terms and remains committed to regaining lost territory, including Crimea, which Russia annexed in 2014.

We will see what the future holds and whether Ukrainians really want to yield to the pressure of the Russian leader. The whole world has almost turned against Russia, but the Russian president does not seem particularly concerned about such an atmosphere. His intentions remain the same as they were from the beginning. Putin's political philosophy will surely be subject to study, considering that many of his actions are quite controversial.