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President Joe Biden held a call with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday. The call came at Russia’s request and the tone of the conversation was “serious and substantive,” according to a senior administration official.

“President Biden laid out two paths, two aspects of the U.S. approach that will really depend on Russia’s actions in the period ahead,” the senior administration official said. “One is a path of diplomacy leading toward a de-escalation of the situation, and the other is a path that’s more focused on deterrence, including serious costs and consequences should Russia choose to proceed with a further invasion of Ukraine.”

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The administration official said the costs could include economic costs, adjustments and augmentations of NATO force posture in allied countries and additional assistance to Ukraine to enable it to further defend itself and its territory.

Biden and Putin agreed to the sequence of Strategic Stability Dialogue starting on Jan. 9 in Geneva, a NATO-Russia Council conversation on the 12th and an OSCE meeting on the 13th.

“President Biden was very clear that the United States will be operating on the principle of ‘nothing about you without you,'” the senior administration official said. “No conversations about issues that are of ultimat econcern to our partners and allies without the full consultation and participation of our partners and allies — which President Putin said that he understood.”

Both said there are likely areas where meaningful progress could be made, but also areas where agreements “may be impossible.”

1 COMMENT

  1. Russian Times said:

    Biden signals that compromise with Russia over Ukraine is possible

    The US President reportedly indicated that Washington was not planning to deploy “offensive strike weapons in Ukraine,” the Kremlin said after the call. Top Putin aide Yury Ushakov said obtaining a verbal pledge had been “one of the key points” for Moscow, as far as the proposals Russia had made to the West about its security were concerned. The White House appeared to pour cold water on the claim of any promise having been made, however, stating that Biden had made “no declaration as to intentions” during the conversation.

    Biden reveals what US will do if Russia ‘invades Ukraine’
    Biden “made clear” that the US and its allies would “respond decisively” if Russia moved to invade Ukraine, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said, following the call. If Russia chose to “proceed with a further invasion of Ukraine,” it would face “serious” consequences, including “economic costs,” “adjustments and augmentations of [NATO’s] force posture in Allied countries,” and “additional assistance to Ukraine,” an unnamed senior US official warned. The US and its partners have accused the Kremlin of fomenting tensions at the border with its neighbor, citing an alleged Russian military build-up. Moscow has consistently denied speculation that it is planning an invasion.

    Putin outlines Russia’s response to potential US sanctions
    Responding to a threat of wide-ranging penalties should there be moves against Ukraine, Putin noted that the imposition of further punitive measures would deal a deadly blow to US-Russia relations. “Unprecedented sanctions” targeting Russia’s economy, and financial and military industry, if imposed, would lead to a “complete breakdown” of bilateral ties, Ushakov said, and such a scenario would be “a colossal mistake.”

    Format for Russia’s new-year talks with West revealed
    The call was designed to set what the White House called the “tone and tenor” for a series of diplomatic meetings scheduled to take place in the first half of January. The exchanges will be conducted in three formats: a Russia-US meeting to be held on January 9 and 10 in Geneva, followed by another in Brussels between Russia and NATO on January 12, and a final encounter on January 13 at the level of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.

    Putin sets out end-goal of talks with US and NATO
    In his call with Biden, Putin had also laid out the security guarantees Moscow has requested of the US and NATO, the Kremlin stated. The Russian president had stressed that, while the mere fact of their negotiating was important, he expected concrete results from their meetings. Moscow’s ultimate goal was to obtain the necessary guarantees regarding its security, Putin told Biden, according to Ushakov. The US president appeared to take the demand “quite seriously,” the adviser said.

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