Top US and Ukrainian diplomats discuss their strategy ahead of Russia-NATO talks

12 January 2022, 12:44 PM

Ahead of talks between Russia and NATO on Jan. 12, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba has discussed sanctions and the combat readiness of the Ukrainian Armed Forces with United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken, according to a press statement released by the Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Blinken and Kuleba also discussed a new set of comprehensive economic sanctions aimed at deterring further Russian aggression, and about concrete ways of bolstering Ukraine’s capacity to repel a potential Russian invasion.

Both sides reaffirmed their commitment “to not make any agreements about Ukraine without Ukraine.”

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The United States is unwavering in its support of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, Blinken said.

“Our partners are beginning to see that Euro-Atlantic peace and stability requires that Ukraine be secure,” said Kuleba. “We’re working together to bring forth this necessary ingredient for peace in Europe.”

“The recent Geneva talks have clearly shown that Russian ultimatums have to be met with our collective resolve and unity,” the minister added.

On Dec. 17, Russia issued demands they called “security guarantees” from the United States and NATO, including that Ukraine be forbidden from ever becoming a member of the alliance – all against the backdrop of a continuous buildup of Russian troops close to the Ukrainian border.

Following talks with the United States on Jan. 10, Russia reiterated the demand that Ukraine be barred from ever joining the alliance – a demand that Washington says is impossible to satisfy.

A meeting between the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe and Russia is scheduled for later this January.

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