US and Russian Presidents Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin had a phone call Thursday evening. It took 50 minutes, the White House reported. According to previous statements by the US side, the two leaders discussed the situation on the Russian-Ukrainian border and the issue of security in Europe.
The conversation started at 21.35 Poland time and lasted 50 minutes. It was held on the initiative of Putin. Before its launch, on Wednesday, the US authorities announced that several topics would be discussed, including diplomatic negotiations scheduled for January, relating, among other things, to Ukraine.
The first statements of the Russian ambassador to the United States after the two presidents’ talks concluded that the issue of Ukraine had been raised during the talks. “Russia has the right to demand guarantees” and “express concern about the entry of NATO forces into Ukrainian territory,” the Russian ambassador told TASS.
“Russian President Vladimir Putin has warned his US counterpart Joe Biden that new Western sanctions against Moscow could sever relations between Russia and the United States and would be a big mistake,” the Kremlin said in a statement.
Adviser to the Russian President, Yuri Ushakov, said that Russia is satisfied with the phone conversation that Vladimir Putin had with Joe Biden. He explained that the leaders’ conversation focused on the security guarantees that Moscow wants in the face of the build-up of its forces on the border with Ukraine.
Biden consults with European leaders
U.S. National Security Council spokeswoman Emily Horne said Wednesday that Biden had previously consulted with leaders in Europe on the issue prior to Thursday’s phone call. “The US administration continues consultations with European allies and partners, in response to the reinforcement of Russian military forces on the border with Ukraine,” Horn said in a press release.
Previously Biden and Putin talk In the form of a two-hour video conference, on December 7.
Negotiations on the situation on the Russian-Ukrainian border
Meetings and negotiations between Russian and US diplomats on the situation on the Russian-Ukrainian border and on broader security issues will begin on January 10 in Geneva. The delegations will be led by Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov and US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman.
– During these talks, we will strive to obtain strong legal guarantees of Russia’s security from the United States, that is, that NATO will not move to the East, and weapons systems that threaten Russia will not be deployed near our borders – said Maria, a spokeswoman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Moscow on Thursday .
The meeting of the NATO Military Committee, with the participation of the Chiefs of General Staff of the Armed Forces of NATO countries, is scheduled for January 12 in Brussels. The NATO press office announced that the meeting of the NATO-Russia Council is scheduled for the same day. Moscow confirmed that it had received the proposed date, but had not yet accepted it.
Suggestions for the so-called security guarantee
On December 17, the Russian Foreign Ministry published proposals for the so-called security guarantees that Moscow demands from the West. It is a draft “Treaty between the Russian Federation and the United States on Security Guarantees” and a draft agreement between Russia and NATO.
The Biden administration responded that some of the Russian proposals were unacceptable. Washington and NATO were based on the principle that NATO membership is open to any eligible country, including Ukraine.
Main image source: Adam Schultz/White House/Reuters/Forum
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