News ID: 108847
Publish Date : 11 November 2022 - 22:18

Moscow: Kherson’s Status as ‘Part of Russia’ Unchanged Despite Retreat

MOSCOW (Dispatches) -The Kremlin said on Friday that Russian forces’ withdrawal from Kherson would not change the status of the region.
Kherson and three other Ukrainian regions joined Russia after holding referendums in September But on Wednesday, in a major retreat, it announced its forces would pull out of Kherson city.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters the region’s status was “fixed” and that no changes were possible.
“It is a subject of the Russian Federation - it is legally fixed and defined. There are no changes and there can be no changes,” Peskov said.
He said Russia did not regret announcing the annexation of Kherson and the other three regions in a triumphal ceremony in Moscow on Sept. 30.
In the Kremlin’s first public comments since Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu announced Russian forces would withdraw from Kherson city to the opposite side of the River Dnipro, Peskov said it was a decision taken by the defense ministry and he had “nothing to add.”
He said Russia remained committed to achieving the goals of what it calls its “special military operation” in Ukraine.
The conflict “can only be ended after its goals have been achieved - or by achieving those goals through peace negotiations,” Peskov said.
“However, due to the position taken by the Ukrainian side, peace talks are impossible,” he added.
Meanwhile, the U.S. and its allies have provided a large cache of military equipment to Ukraine in recent months despite Russia’s warning that it would prolong the war.
A U.S. official said Thursday that the U.S. will buy 100,000 rounds of howitzer artillery from South Korean manufacturers to provide to Ukraine.
South Korea’s defense ministry announced in a statement that the country’s position on not sending lethal military aid to Ukraine has not changed and its “confidential” negotiations on the sale of the artillery shells were being conducted “under the premise that the U.S. is the end user”.
“In order to make up for the shortage of 155mm ammunition inventories in the U.S., negotiations are ongoing between the U.S. and Korean companies to export ammunition,” the ministry said in a statement.
The U.S. official, however, warned that news about negotiations on the arms deal could be a threat to reaching an agreement.
South Korea, which is a close ally of Washington, has tried very hard to avoid enmity with Moscow for economic reasons and also because Russia can play an important role in North Korea’s rivalry with South Korea.
Russian President Vladimir Putin last month said that Seoul’s actions could damage their bilateral relations, South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol said the country has not yet provided Ukraine with any lethal weapons.