Home / News / World /  'I won't kill Zelensky': Vladimir Putin's promise in early days of Russia-Ukraine war

'Are you planning to kill Zelensky?' He said I won't kill Zelensky', former Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, who initially acted as a mediator between Russia and Ukraine when the war broke out in February 2022, said that Russian President Vladimir Putin had promised not to kill his Ukrainian counterpart, according to AP. 

In the interview, Benett mentioned that Russian President Putin had given his word that he wouldn't kill the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky amid the ongoing war between the two countries. 

The report from AP comes at a  time when it is going to be a year from when the war started in February 2022, with Putin's military executing a special operation on the East European country citing NATO involvement. 

Benett's interview that was posted online on Saturday shed light on the backroom politics, diplomacy and urgent efforts that were underway to try to bring the conflict to a speedy conclusion in its early days.

In the five-hour interview, which touched on numerous other subjects, Bennett says he asked Putin about whether he intended to kill Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

“I asked what's up with this? Are you planning to kill Zelensky?' He said I won't kill Zelensky.' I then said to him I have to understand that you're giving me your word that you won't kill Zelensky.' He said I'm not going to kill Zelenskyy.'" quoted AP

Bennett also said that he had called Zelensky after his snap trip to Moscow last year as one of the few Western leaders to have met Putin in person during the early days of the war. He had called Zelenky to tell him, “'Listen, I came out of a meeting, he's not going to kill you.' He asks, are you sure?' I said '100 per cent he won't kill you.'"

While this doesn't solve the immense bloodshed and tragedy that has befallen the residents of Ukraine, this does provide a newer perspective to the war between Russia and Ukraine. 

Bennett said that during his mediation, Putin dropped his vow to seek Ukraine's disarmament and Zelensky promised not to join NATO.

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