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Putin says Russia ‘of course’ does not want war with Ukraine

Russian President Vladimir Putin (L) and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz are seen ahead of their meeting over Ukraine security at the Kremlin, in Moscow, on February 15, 2022. (Mikhail Klimentyev / Sputnik / AFP)
Russian President Vladimir Putin (L) and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz are seen ahead of their meeting over Ukraine security at the Kremlin, in Moscow, on February 15, 2022. (Mikhail Klimentyev / Sputnik / AFP)

President Vladimir Putin says Russia does not want war, after Western capitals accused Moscow of amassing troops near Ukraine with plans to invade.

“Do we want this or not? Of course, not. That is exactly why we put forward proposals for a process of negotiations,” Putin tells a press conference following talks with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Moscow.

Scholz says he agrees diplomatic options are “far from exhausted.” The announcement of troops being pulled back is a “good signal,” he says, adding that he hopes that “more will follow.”

Scholz adds that “for Europeans it is clear that lasting security cannot be achieved against Russia but only with Russia.”

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