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Justice Minister: Russia demanded Ukraine lift sanctions during 2022 negotiations

Russia also demanded that the lawsuits be dropped. 

Justice Minister: Russia demanded Ukraine lift sanctions during 2022 negotiations
Minister of Justice of Ukraine Denys Malyuska
Photo: Max Trebukhov

During negotiations with Ukraine at the beginning of the full-scale war, Russia demanded the lifting of Western sanctions against it.

Minister of Justice Denys Malyuska spoke about this during the discussion "Crime and Justice: How to Bring the Aggressor to Justice" organised by and EFI Group as part of the New Country project. He believes that Russia is currently fighting not for territories, but for intangible concepts: the lifting of sanctions and the world's recognition of the occupied territories, and the redistribution of forces.

"A lot of documents from '22 have been leaked to the media: the Russians were very interested in the entire legal array of everything that is against them. The key condition that they did not back down from and demanded was that Ukraine refused all legal measures that we took. Lawsuits, statements, sanctions," the minister said.

Russia demanded a commitment that Ukraine would ask its international partners to lift sanctions. The minister assumes that in the next negotiations with Russia, if they take place, the Russians will insist on the same.

Malyuska suggests that Russia's intangible interest is now the key to the war. 

"I am deeply convinced that Russia is not fighting for physical control of the territory. Russia is a big country - a region more or less is not critical for them at this stage. There was a certain plan to control Ukraine in 2022. Now they are fighting, I think, for geopolitical things," he said.

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