Putin And Biden Hold Talks Over Ukraine
Russian President Vladimir Putin held a crucial 50 minute phone call with American President Joe Biden on Thursday. This is the second time the two leaders spoke about Ukraine in the span of less than a month.
The phone call was requested by Putin, according to reports from the New York Times.
The report suggests that Putin pushed for a treaty in which Moscow gets an assurance that Ukraine would never join NATO and that NATO will not install offensive arms in former Soviet states.
In the phone call Putin 'warned' Biden that imposition of sanctions on Russia over Ukraine will be a "colossal mistake" and lead to a complete breakdown in Russo-American relations.
After the call, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said that, "President Biden reiterated that substantive progress in these dialogues can occur only in an environment of de-escalation,".
She added that, ""He (President Biden) made (it) clear that the United States and its allies and partners will respond decisively if Russia further invades Ukraine,"
Russian foreign policy advisor Yuri Ushakov told reporters that Putin was "pleased" with the conversation and that it will lead to a good back-drop for future talks.
The Russian President's spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said that Moscow was "in the mood for a conversation". He added that, ""We believe that only through talks is it possible to solve all the immediate problems that we have in abundance between us".
Before the call on Thursday, in a holiday message, Putin told Biden that he was convinced both their countries could work together based on "mutual respect and consideration of each other's national interests".
Delegations from Moscow and Washington DC will meet each other for talks on January 10th, most likely in Geneva, Switzerland.
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