Russia calls for a 36-hour TRUCE in Ukraine starting at noon tomorrow on the occasion of Orthodox Christmas
- The proposed ceasefire would run from 12:00 pm on January 6 until midnight on January 7.
- Many Orthodox Christians celebrate on January 6-7, rather than in December
- It was reported today that Putin was open to peace talks with Kyiv, but only if Ukraine accepted the “new territorial realities”.
Vladimir Putin has ordered a temporary ceasefire in the war in Ukraine to allow people to celebrate Orthodox Christmas, Russian media reported.
The Russian leader asked Kyiv to observe the proposed truce, which would last for 36 hours: from 12:00 on January 6 to midnight on January 7.
He ordered his defense minister, Sergei Shoigu, to introduce a ceasefire along the entire line of contact, the Kremlin reported.
The call for a ceasefire followed an earlier proposal by Russia’s spiritual leader, Patriarch Kirill, for an Orthodox Christmas truce this week.
The move was dismissed by Kyiv as a cynical trap by Moscow.
The Russian Orthodox Church, which uses the old Julian calendar, celebrates Christmas on January 7, later than the Gregorian calendar, although some Christians in Ukraine also celebrate the holiday on that date.
Vladimir Putin (pictured today) has ordered a temporary ceasefire in the war in Ukraine to allow people to celebrate Orthodox Christmas, Russian media reported.
The Russian leader called on Kyiv to observe the proposed truce, which would last for 36 hours: from 12:00 on January 6 to midnight on January 7, to allow people to observe Orthodox Christmas. Pictured: A Christmas tree is seen in Kyiv on January 2.
“Taking into account the appeal of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill, I order the Minister of Defense of the Russian Federation to introduce a ceasefire regime along the entire line of contact of the parties in Ukraine from 12:00 on 6 January 2023 until midnight on January 7. , 2023′, Putin said in the order.
“Based on the fact that a large number of citizens professing Orthodoxy live in the areas of hostilities, we call on the Ukrainian side to declare a ceasefire and allow them to attend services on Christmas Eve, as well as on Christmas day.”
Earlier on Thursday, Ukrainian presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak dismissed Patriarch Kirill’s call as “a cynical trap and a propaganda piece.”
President Volodymyr Zelensky had proposed a withdrawal of Russian troops earlier, before December 25, but Russia rejected it.
Kirill has previously justified the war as part of Russia’s ‘metaphysical struggle’ to prevent a liberal ideological invasion from the West.
Putin spoke by phone with Turkey’s president on Thursday and the Kremlin said Putin “reaffirmed Russia’s openness to serious dialogue” with the Ukrainian authorities.
But that professed provision came with the usual preconditions: that “the Kyiv authorities comply with the well-known and reiterated demands and recognize the new territorial realities,” the Kremlin said, referring to Moscow’s insistence that Ukraine recognize Crimea as part of Russia and recognize other illegal territories. territorial gains.
Russian troops occupy large swaths of eastern and southern Ukraine. The Kremlin claims that it has annexed the Donetsk, Lugansk, Zaporizhzhia and Kherson regions despite not fully controlling them.
Previous attempts at peace talks have failed on that hurdle, with Ukraine demanding that Russia withdraw from the occupied areas at the very least.
Elsewhere, the NATO chief said he detected no change in Moscow’s stance on Ukraine, insisting the Kremlin “wants a Europe where it can control a neighboring country.”
“We have no indication that President Putin has changed his plans, his goals for Ukraine,” NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said in Oslo.
Meanwhile, Erdogan pressured Putin to declare a ‘unilateral’ ceasefire in Ukraine.
Erdogan spoke with both Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in his latest attempts as a mediator to negotiate an end to the 10-month war, which began when the Russian despot ordered the invasion on February 24, 2022.
This is breaking news. More to follow…