The head of Russian diplomacy advised President Vladimir Putin on Monday to continue the talks with west on Russian security demands amid tensions over Ukraine.
Speaking to the start of a meeting with Putin, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov suggested that Moscow should continue a dialogue with the United States and its allies even though they rejected Russia’s proposal main security conditions.
“Like head of Ministry of Foreign Affairs, I must say that there is always a chance”to find a deal,” Lavrov told Putin in a meeting whenon asked him to comment on ongoing talks with the west.
He noted that the United States had offered to conduct dialogue on limits for missile deployments in Europe, restrictions on military exercises and other confidences-building measures. Asked by Putin if he made logical to continue diplomatic efforts, Lavrov replied that the possibilities for the talks have not been exhausted and offered to continue negotiations.
“Is there chance come to an agreement with our partners on key problems or is it an attempt to drag us in an endless negotiation process?” Putin asked Lavrov in television talk.
Lavrov replied: “Our possibilities are far from exhausted, they should not continue indefinitely, but I would suggest continuing and intensifying them up.”
The meeting took place as the German Chancellor embarked on a trip to Kyiv and Moscow for a last- abandon the attempt to head off a feared Russian invasion of The Ukraine that some are warning could only be days away.
The United States and its NATO allies have repeatedly warned Russia that it will pay a high price price for any invasion – but they sometimes struggled to present a united front. by Scholz government, in particular, has been criticized for refuse to supply lethal weapons to Ukraine or spell out which would punish support against Russia, raising questions about Berlin resolve stand up in Moscow.
So far NATO’s warnings seem to have had little effect: Russia has only strengthened up troops and weapons in the region and launched massive exercises with son ally Belarus, which also Ukrainian neighbors. The West fears that the exercises, which run until Sunday, could be used by Moscow as a cover for a invasion from north.
Russia repeatedly brushed off Ukrainian and Western concerns about military buildup, claiming it has the right to deploy forces wherever necessary on son territory.
Moscow wants guarantees from the West that NATO won’t allow Ukraine and others former Soviet countries at join as members, and that the alliance will stop the deployment of weapons in Ukraine and launch back its forces from Eastern Europe. However, the United States and NATO flatly rejected these demands.
Some observers expect Moscow to eventually agree to a compromise that help avoid the hostilities and allow all sides to save face. While NATO refuses to shut the door to Ukraine, the alliance also has no intention of embrace it or any other ex-soviet nation at any time soon. Some experts have floated ideas such as a moratorium on NATO expansion or neutral status for Ukraine to defuse tensions.
Meanwhile, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said on Sunday that Kiev had requested a meeting of the organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) in the next 48 hours to discuss Russian deployments near the country’s borders.
Russia and Ukraine have been locked down in a bitter conflict since 2014, when the pro-Kremlin Ukrainian leader was ousted from office by a popular uprising. Moscow responded by annexing the Crimean peninsula, then backing a separatist insurgency in eastern Ukraine, where fighting has killed over 14,000 people.
The European Union is preparing several responses to any new moves by Russia to destabilize Ukraine, but the bloc does not know exactly what Moscow plans do, an EU official noted.
the official says american talks with Russia “didn’t give in much” but dialogue with Putin was always open through the leaders of Germany and France.
the official, who spoken conditionally of anonymity, said the harsher the EU sanctions against Russia would be in Case of a military invasion no more hit for the block should Moscow retaliates.
the official says 40% of EU gas came from Russia and that block was in talks with Norway and Qatar, among others, on increasing energy supplies if necessary.
the official also said that the EU was considering how quickly Russia could switch its energy supplies in China should it reduced sales in Europe.
The EU was also preparing for refugee arrivals should Russia is invading Ukraine, they said.
The source said the EU expected to decide on more macroeconomic support for Ukraine and Kiev was looking for more Politics support.
Some in the EU wanted impose severe sanctions to discourage Russia from any attackbut others have said that this amount to an escalation of tensions and that the block should react only later if necessary, the official noted.