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Talks over Ukraine crisis to start Jan. 10 in Europe

Tuesday, December 28th 2021 - 20:15 UTC
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Western governments fear Russia might invade Ukraine soon, but Putin has denied it Western governments fear Russia might invade Ukraine soon, but Putin has denied it

High-ranking officials from the United States and Russia are to meet in Geneva on Jan. 10 for talks regarding tensions over Ukraine, it was announced. Russia and NATO were also likely to convene on Jan. 12 in Brussels with a broader meeting set for Jan. 13 involving the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, which includes the US and its NATO allies, as well as Russia, Ukraine, and other ex-Soviet states.

Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov confirmed those dates Tuesday and said he hoped the talks with the US in Geneva would launch a process that would give Moscow new security guarantees from the West.

Nevertheless, Ryabkov admitted Moscow and Washington would not be able to solve the whole crisis in just one meeting. “It is impossible to reach an agreement in one day, nor can we protract the process since the issue is very urgent and very serious, as well,” he told Tass. The Russian diplomat also stressed his country viewed the current situation as one which “demands urgent action.”

For that reason, Ryabkov warned against the possibility that all negotiations might amount to “endless arguments, ... with ensuing consequences.”

Russia's Foreign Ministry has published the draft agreements between Moscow and Washington on security guarantees and security measures to be adopted by Russia and NATO member states, which has been received with positive eyes by the Joseph Biden administration, according to President Vladimir Putin last week.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg had confirmed receiving Russia’s proposals on security guarantees in Europe and said that the alliance would study them.

Meanwhile, a spokesperson for the White House National Security Council told reporters that “when we sit down to talk, Russia can put its concerns on the table, and we will put our concerns on the table with Russia's activities as well.”

“There will be areas where we can make progress, and areas where we will disagree. That's what diplomacy is about,” the spokesperson went on.

Western governments have been alarmed by the presence of Russian troops along the border with Ukraine, expressing concern about potential plans for a Russian invasion, which Putin has consistently denied.

“President Biden's approach on Ukraine has been clear and consistent: unite the alliance behind two tracks — deterrence and diplomacy. We are unified as an alliance on the consequences Russia would face if it moves on Ukraine,” the spokesperson said.

Read also: Top British military officer warns of dangers facing Europe


Categories: Politics, International.

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