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Paige Fusco

Graphic Truth: What would Ukrainians give up for peace?

Ukraine is days away from marking the second anniversary of Russia’s 2022 invasion. The war is largely stalemated, with few changes to the battlefield map in recent months. Ukrainian troops are engaged in brutal trench warfare reminiscent of World War I but with the added nightmare of deadlier modern weaponry and technology. After enjoying strong, steady support from its Western allies in the first year and a half of the war, Kyiv now faces a constant struggle to keep aid flowing in as it runs short on supplies and faces manpower issues. Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin shows no signs of backing down despite the myriad political, economic, and societal consequences the war has had for Russia.

But none of that is undermining Ukraine’s resolve. New polling from the Munich Security Conference shows that Ukrainians are strongly opposed to any cease-fire framework that would require Kyiv to cede territory to Russia — particularly Crimea, which Moscow annexed in 2014. This suggests that Ukrainians are largely aligned with their government, which has pushed for a peace plan that would see Russia withdraw troops from occupied territories and recognize Ukraine’s 1991 post-Soviet borders. Moscow has scoffed at this proposal.

FILE PHOTO: Lieutenant General Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo, deputy head of the military council and head of paramilitary Rapid Support Forces (RSF), greets his supporters as he arrives at a meeting in Aprag village, 60 kilometers away from Khartoum, Sudan, June 22, 2019.

REUTERS/Umit Bektas

Sudan’s warring parties resume peace talks

Six months into the civil war in Sudan – which has killed 9,000 people and displaced over 5 million – the armed forces and their paramilitary enemies in the Rapid Support Forces have resumed peace talks in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

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Serb army veterans protesting near Podujevo in Kosovo ,February 21, 2008.

REUTERS/Hazir Reka

Kosovo 15 years later: a dangerous limbo

There are very few places on earth where a dispute over license plates can threaten to ignite a war, and the city of Mitrovica, in northern Kosovo, is one of them.

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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky speaks during an interview with Reuters in Kyiv.

REUTERS/Valentyn Ogirenko

What We're Watching: Ukraine won't negotiate, AMLO busted spying, North Korean missile diplomacy

Ukraine on offense

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky issued a decree on Tuesday asserting that all the lands that Russia’s Vladimir Putin claimed to annex last week — and Crimea, which Russia seized in 2014 — remain part of Ukraine. Zelensky and his generals appear to believe that Ukraine is winning the war with Russia, and they have battlefield advances to back up their case. The Institute for the Study of War, a Washington-based military think tank, has reported that Ukraine has made “substantial gains” on both the eastern and southern fronts over the past few days and that the units they’re defeating are “some of Russia’s most elite forces.” No wonder Zelensky and many others would swat away suggestions from billionaire eccentric Elon Musk that Ukraine might trade land for peace. Russia has acknowledged recent losses, and blame continues to land on the country’s military brass. It’s not clear how far Ukraine can extend its current gains, but the recapture of Crimea, in particular, will be even more difficult than the more immediate tasks ahead for Ukrainian forces. But for now, Ukraine has pushed the Russian military, and the Kremlin, onto its heels.

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