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Montevideo, July 4th 2022 - 03:33 UTC

 

 

Biden okay with holding summit with Putin... “in principle”

Monday, February 21st 2022 - 20:23 UTC
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Meeting possible as long as Russia noes not attack Ukraine, Biden said Meeting possible as long as Russia noes not attack Ukraine, Biden said

US President Joseph Biden Monday said he would agree to hold a meeting with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, who has also accepted the proposal submitted by France's leader Emmanuel Macron as the last diplomatic efforts are undertaken to avoid an all-out war over Ukraine.

The summit was first announced by France after a phone call between Macron and Putin

According to a statement, “Presidents Biden and Putin have each accepted the principle of such a summit.”

“Its content will be prepared by Secretary of State [Anthony] Blinken and [Russian Foreign] Minister [Sergey] Lavrov during their meeting on Thursday 24 February,“ the document went on.

But ”it can only be held if Russia does not invade Ukraine,” it warned.

The time and place for the summit is yet to be agreed upon, French diplomatic sources explained.

“We are always ready for diplomacy,” White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said. “We are also ready to impose swift and severe consequences should Russia instead choose war.”

Also involved in the diplomatic negotiations were Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. But what role would Ukraine exactly play in the summit, if any, was also uncertain.

Russian forces have been amassing around the Ukrainian border since late last year, which Western countries view as a threat of an invasion that could come at any moment.

Russia has denied any intention to invade, but has demanded nevertheless Ukraine's bid for NATO membership is not approved.

Meanwhile, two rogue Ukraninian provinces in the Donbass region -Donetsk and Lugansk- have asked Putin that Russia recognizes their independence as sovereign republics. Lugansk and Donetsk People's Republics leaders Leonid Pasechnik and Denis Pushilin respectively have asked Moscow to show additional signs of its endorsement.

“On behalf of all of the people of the DPR, we are asking you to recognize the Donetsk People’s Republic as an independent, democratic and social state based on the rule of law,” Pushilin stated.

Pasechnik said: “With the goal of preventing mass deaths among the republic’s civilian population, some 300,000 of whom are Russian citizens, I’m asking you to recognize the sovereignty and independence of the Lugansk People’s Republic.”

Both leaders have also suggested signing a treaty on friendship and cooperation with Russia, including on military cooperation.

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