Biden vows to respond ‘decisively’ if Russia invades Ukraine

President Joe Biden has held talks with Ukraine’s leader over building Russian troops near the border, promising that the United States and its allies will act “decisively” if Russia invades.

Mr Biden and President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s call came as allies of the United States and the West prepare for a series of diplomatic meetings to try to defuse a crisis which Moscow says could sever ties. with Washington.

“President Biden has made it clear that the United States and its allies and partners will react decisively if Russia further invades Ukraine,” White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said in a statement afterwards. of the call.

Ms Psaki added that Mr Biden underlined his commitment to the principle of “nothing about you without you”, the principle that he will not negotiate policies that have an impact on Europe without the contribution of his allies.

New Year Russia Putin
Vladimir Putin has been warned not to invade Ukraine (Kremlin Pool Photo via AP)

The Kremlin demanded that any further NATO expansion exclude Ukraine and other countries of the former USSR.

The Russians also demanded that the military alliance withdraw offensive weapons from countries in the region.

The White House has dismissed Russia’s claims as unfounded. A key principle of the NATO alliance is that membership is open to any eligible country and that no foreigner has the right of veto.

While it is unlikely that Ukraine will be invited to the alliance anytime soon, the United States and its allies will not rule it out.

Zelenskyy said in a Twitter post after Sunday’s appeal that “the maintenance of peace in Europe, the prevention of further escalation, reforms, desoligarchization have been discussed.”

“We appreciate the unwavering support,” Zelenskyy said.

The United States has made little progress in its efforts to persuade Russian President Vladimir Putin to ease tensions.

Senior US and Russian officials are due to meet January 9-10 in Geneva to discuss the situation.

These talks will be followed by meetings at the NATO-Russia Council and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe.

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