Zelensky, from Kharkiv, Urges Biden and Xi to Join Peace Summit in Switzerland

KYIV – On May 26, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky issued an urgent plea to U.S. President Joe Biden and Chinese leader Xi Jinping to participate in an upcoming peace summit in Switzerland. This call comes as Ukraine continues to endure relentless attacks from Russian forces, marking the 27th month of the invasion.

Russian troops have recently made advances on the battlefield and intensified air strikes on Ukrainian cities. Kyiv hopes that the peace summit, scheduled for June, will amplify international pressure on Russian President Vladimir Putin to end the conflict.

In a video message recorded in English from the charred remains of a printing press destroyed by a Russian air strike on May 23, Zelensky emphasized the importance of the summit. He stated that the meeting would “show who in the world really wants to end the war.”

“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,” Zelensky urged. “Please, show your leadership in advancing the peace – the real peace and not just a pause between the strikes.”

Moscow has dismissed the conference, as Russia has not been invited to participate. Zelensky’s comments follow reports that Russian sources suggested President Putin was prepared to consider a ceasefire that acknowledges the current front lines. However, Zelensky and his allies argue that such a ceasefire would only allow Russia to rearm and regroup.

In recent months, Russian forces have made slow but consistent progress along various sections of the eastern front and have intensified efforts to penetrate deeper into the northeastern Kharkiv region following a ground offensive initiated earlier in May.

During a recent interview with Reuters, Zelensky highlighted the importance of involving as many nations as possible in the peace talks. Meanwhile, Putin has expressed concerns that the talks could turn Ukrainian demands for a Russian withdrawal into a non-negotiable ultimatum for Russia.

The upcoming summit represents a critical juncture in the ongoing conflict, as international leaders are called upon to demonstrate their commitment to achieving a lasting peace in Ukraine.