Monday, February 6

The United States opens the door to negotiate with Russia on the deployment of missiles and military exercises | International

The United States presents itself with one of lime and another of sand before the new round of talks with Russia on Ukraine that takes place this Monday in Geneva. The Joe Biden Administration opens the door to negotiate with the Kremlin on issues such as the deployment of missiles and the scope of military maneuvers by both parties in the region if the pressure on the country eases, US officials explained in a phone call this Saturday. with journalists, but it also raises a range of serious economic sanctions if Vladimir Putin intervenes, a fear that the Russian leader has encouraged by reinforcing the presence of troops on the Ukrainian border.

Washington and Moscow will sit at the table seven months after the summit between Biden and Putin, held in the same city last June, and which set the tone for what had been the first part of the year: so much interest in not continuing to climb tension as mistrust between the parties. This time the leaders will not participate. The US delegation will be led by the US Undersecretary of State, Wendy Sherman, and the Russian, the Deputy Foreign Minister, Sergei Ryabkov. The context has also changed: the Kremlin has concentrated tens of thousands of soldiers on the border with Ukraine, and the United States has raised the tone.

“Although we prefer, by far, to de-escalate [esta crisis] Through diplomatic channels, if Russia chooses the other path, we are more than prepared, and in agreement with our partners and allies, on imposing heavy costs through financial sanctions, export controls targeting key industries, reinforcement of NATO positions in allied territory and increased security support for Ukraine ”, explained this Saturday the aforementioned US Administration sources.

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Russia, however, on Sunday excluded any “concessions” in talks with the United States in Geneva, said the Deputy Foreign Minister. “We will not accept any concessions. It is totally ruled out, ”Sergei Ryabkov, who must participate in the negotiations, told Russian press agencies.

Some of the restrictions that the allies study would affect US products that are exported to the country, as well as some manufactured abroad, but that are subject to the jurisdiction of the North American country or others with a specific percentage of American composition, according to Reuters agency a source familiar with this matter. Russia could, in short, become part of the group of countries most penalized by the United States with respect to foreign trade, a club that includes Cuba, Iran, North Korea and Syria.

The dissemination of these details serves to prepare the ground for Monday’s appointment, to which Washington assures that it arrives with more “realism” than pessimism. Any agreement on maneuvers and missiles, yes, emphasizes the Biden government, would take place in a consensual manner with Ukraine and with NATO allies. In fact, the contacts will continue during the week in an already multilateral field. Following the Geneva talks, a special meeting of the NATO-Russia Council will take place in Brussels on Wednesday and a session of the Organization for Security and European Cooperation (OSCE) in Vienna on Thursday.

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Moscow comes to the table with the request for legal guarantees that NATO will not carry out military reinforcements on Russia’s European borders, especially on Ukraine’s. In a draft proposal made public in mid-December, on the occasion of a conference call between Biden and Putin, the Kremlin proposes that the Atlantic Alliance assume “the obligation to prevent an expansion of NATO to other states, including the accession of Ukraine “And renounces military exercises in that region, the Caucasus and Central Asia. Sources from the Biden Administration have already warned that with the first they have hit the bone. It is not possible, they pointed out this Saturday, that Moscow decides “whose other countries can be allies.”

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