Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said his country was moving towards peace with Russia. According to Poroshenko, he had been working “day and night” in the last 15 months since Ukraine clashed with Russia. While he does not want to dream about peace yet, he said there was “a change in tactics.”
“We know where the Russians and their proxies are still hiding their weapons, their tanks and their artillery – for now the order has been given to cease fire, but for how long?” the Ukrainian president told The Independent. “This is not the end of the war, but instead a change in tactics.”
Russian news agency Tass reported that the Ukrainian defense ministry and the general headquarters had started the process of demobilization in September upon Poroshenko’s order.
"It is an absolutely logical position: we have mobilized personnel, now they are being trained at mobilization centers to defend the state. And large-scale demobilization is underway - those mobilized earlier are returning home," the news agency quoted the Ukrainian president as saying.
Ukraine said that it had drawn “red lines” in its partnership with Western nations, while Poroshenko said that those “red lines” included the release of 11 political prisoners in Ukraine, presently held in Russian prisons. He referred to Crimean film director Oleg Sentsov who had been sentenced to 23 years of imprisonment. The Ukrainian president said Sentsov’s only crime was being a Ukrainian and being proud of his nationality.
The Independent claimed that hostage negotiator Vladimir Ruban offered the exchange of Sentsov and Alexander Kolchenko for two Russian servicemen arrested near Luhansk in July. However, the Ukrainian president has denied such claims.