“Decrease the tension and continue to talk”. It is the main idea that results from the telephone conversation between Russian and American presidents, Vladimir Putin and Joe Biden, in the midst of growing military tension on the border between Russia and Ukraine.
According to a transcript of the conversation, released by the White House, Biden questioned Putin about Russian military concentration, emphasizing “the United States’ unwavering commitment to Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity”.
BREAKING: President Joe Biden raised concerns about the Russian military buildup on Ukraine's border in a phone call with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Moscow annexed Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula in 2014. https://t.co/FBsvoHR6Ia
— The Associated Press (@AP) April 13, 2021
Kiev and the West accuse Russia of sending tens of thousands of troops to the borders of the former Soviet republic, which has ambitions to join NATO. Ukraine estimates the Russian military presence at more than 80,000 soldiers and expresses fears of an invasion.
The presidential call came after the meeting of the Ukrainian Foreign Minister with the NATO Secretary-General in Brussels. At the end of the meeting, at a joint press conference, Jens Stoltenberg said: “Russia’s considerable military concentration is unjustified, unexplained and deeply worrying. Russia must end this military concentration in and around Ukraine, stop its activities. provocations and de-escalate the tension immediately “.
For his part, Dmytro Kuleba, the head of Ukrainian diplomacy, stressed: “Ukraine does not want war. We do not plan any offensive or escalation. Ukraine uses diplomatic and political means to resolve the conflict.”
Moscow argues that it is only responding to NATO’s military concentration near the Russian borders.
Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said: “In response to the alliance’s military activities that threaten Russia, we have taken appropriate action. Within three weeks, two armies and three airborne formations were successfully deployed to the western borders of the Russian Federation in areas where training and combat missions were carried out. The troops demonstrated total readiness and ability to carry out tasks to guarantee the military security of the country “.
Since the beginning of the year, there has been an upsurge in violence between Kyiv’s forces and pro-Russian separatists in western Ukraine.
Joe Biden proposed to Vladimir Putin to hold a summit in the coming months, but Moscow has not yet said whether it accepts the proposal.
Source: with Agencies