German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said the onus for ending the war in Ukraine remains on Russian President Vladimir Putin.
“To my view, it is necessary that Putin understands that he will not succeed with his invasion and his imperialistic aggression and that he has to withdraw troops. This is the basis for talks,” he said in an interview that aired Sunday on CNN’s “Fareed Zakaria GPS.”
The German leader acknowledged that the year-old Russia-Ukraine war had settled into a stalemate that is inflicting a tremendous amount of damage on Ukraine. But he said he will not press Ukrainians to make uncomfortable compromises.
“There will be no decisions without the Ukrainians,” Scholz said, saying Putin had clearly misjudged “the strength of Ukraine” as well as the “unity” of “all the friends of Ukraine” in challenging the Russian invasion, which began in February 2022.
He added: “It is very difficult to judge what will be the next things to happen in Ukraine, but there is something which is absolutely clear: We will continue to support Ukraine with financial, humanitarian aid but also with weapons.”
Speaking to Zakaria, Scholz also spoke well of President Joe Biden and his leadership during the current international crisis.
“He is very informed about international relations,” Scholz said. “I think he’s one of the most skilled presidents knowing how things are running in the world, which is important in times that are becoming more dangerous.”