Biden urges Putin to ease Ukraine tensions, proposes summit

  • Biden urges Putin to ease Ukraine tensions, proposes summit

Biden urges Putin to ease Ukraine tensions, proposes summit

"We consider the expression of any concerns from any side, including the United States, in connection with the movements of Russia's armed forces inside Russian Federation, to be groundless".

During the conversation, they discussed various issues, including the Ukraine crisis.

Echoing NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, who met Kuleba earlier, Blinken said Moscow's military actions on Ukraine's doorstep were "very provocative".

The Russian force "mirrors the size and scope and scale of the infiltration of forces that occurred back in 2014", when Moscow annexed Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula, U.S. European Command's Gen. Tod Wolters said during a Senate budget hearing.

Asked if Ukraine could repel a Russian invasion, the head of US forces in Europe told USA lawmakers in a hearing on Tuesday that he believed Ukraine could do that "over time".

"The U.S. stands firmly behind the sovereignty and the territorial integrity of Ukraine", Blinken told Kuleba at the start of their meeting at the residence of the U.S. ambassador to Belgium, a post once held by Blinken's uncle. "On the territory of Ukraine, deescalation can only occur if the Ukrainian armed forces reject provocative actions", he said.

Ryabkov also accused the USA and other North Atlantic Treaty Organisation members of "deliberately turning Ukraine into a powder keg" and of increasing their arms supplies to Ukraine.

"In this struggle, the support of the United States is absolutely crucial and deeply appreciated", Kuleba said. "Seeing itself as the Queen of the Seas, the USA should realize that the risks of various incidents are very high".

During the visit, Kuleba will meet with Stoltenberg. In particular, we call on Russian Federation to uphold the OSCE principles and commitments that it has signed up to on transparency of military movements and to respond to the procedure established under Chapter III of the Vienna Document. "The president voiced our concerns over the sudden Russian military buildup in occupied Crimea and on Ukraine's borders, and called on Russia to de-escalate tensions", the statement read.

Stoltenberg called Moscow's recent troop deployment the biggest military buildup since the conflict in eastern Ukraine began.

The chief of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation on Tuesday called the recent Russian deployment the largest concentration of troops near the Ukraine border since 2014.

Biden said in a March interview that he agreed Putin is a "killer".

The Ukrainian foreign minister sounded defiant toward Moscow, and said Ukraine and its Western partners were better prepared than seven years ago. Moscow, he said, is only now starting to receive information about organizational and other aspects related to the organization of the possible summit.

The Kremlin has warned North Atlantic Treaty Organisation off getting further involved in Ukraine and on Tuesday accused the alliance members of turning the country into a "powder keg". We don't believe in such terminology: "price, retribution and so on", he said.

Ukraine has said Russian Federation has accumulated 41,000 troops at its border with eastern Ukraine and 42,000 more in Crimea.