Maria Zakharova Comments on Zelensky's Negotiation Remarks with Sharp Retort

Written by Henrik Rothen

Mar.30 - 2024 11:00 AM CET

Photo: lev radin /
Photo: lev radin /
In a pointed response to Ukraine's President Zelensky's latest statements about peace talks, Russia's Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, Maria Zakharova, delivers a terse reply that hints at underlying tensions.

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In the intricate dance of diplomacy and public statements that characterizes the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine, words carry weight far beyond their immediate meaning.

Today (March 30th), Maria Zakharova, the official representative of the Russian Foreign Ministry, offered a succinct yet loaded response to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky's comments on potential negotiations between Moscow and Kyiv.

Her retort, captured succinctly by Russian news agency RIA Novosti, was a single word laden with implications: "Nervous."

A Tense Exchange Highlighting Deep Divides

Zakharova's commentary did not stop at merely labeling Zelensky as nervous. She further mused aloud,

"He has elections coming up. Or are there no elections coming up?" This rhetorical question was not just a quip but pointed to the complex political landscape in Ukraine, where upcoming presidential elections were expected to take place on March 31, 2024.

However Zelensky postponed these elections by extending the state of martial law and general mobilization in Ukraine.

The crux of Zakharova's reaction lies in her critique of Zelensky's recent interview with CBS News, where the Ukrainian leader suggested that negotiations between Moscow and Kyiv could start without Ukraine returning to its 1991 borders.

This statement marked a significant departure from Kyiv's earlier stance, which insisted on the withdrawal of Russian troops from Ukrainian territory within the 1991 borders as a precondition for talks.

Elections in the Shadow of Conflict

The postponement of the Ukrainian presidential election underscores the profound impact the ongoing conflict has had on Ukraine's political processes.

Despite the postponement, Zelensky has expressed confidence in his re-election prospects should the elections proceed. This assertion, juxtaposed with Zakharova's pointed remark, underscores the intricate blend of domestic political considerations and international diplomacy that shapes the current landscape.

Whether her characterization of Zelensky as "nervous" is a mere diplomatic barb or a reflection of deeper strategic calculations. The last time Ukraine and Russia had peace talks, it was allegedly the former British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, who caused them to collapse. This was at least the claim from Russia's Foreign Minister. Read more about it below.

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