According to the White House, US President Joe Biden will hold talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday. Both leaders will address continuing tensions over Russia’s military buildup near Ukraine.
In a statement on Wednesday, the White House National Security Council said, “Biden and Putin would call to discuss the range of topics including future diplomatic commitments.”
“The Government of Biden is advising and coordinating a common approach to Russia’s military buildup at the border with Ukraine and continuing extensive diplomacy with its European allies and partners,” the statement said.
The announcement came a few days after Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Viklov announced that Russian diplomats and military officials would attend a meeting with the US in January over the list of security Moscow is demanding from Washington.
A National Security Council spokesman said, ” these talks would take place on January 10. Officials from Moscow and NATO will meet on January 12. The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), including Russia and the US, will address tensions the next day.
Tensions between Russia and the Western nations have boiled in recent weeks after the Kremlin has stationed tens of thousands of soldiers near the Ukrainian border.
Military operations have raised concerns that Moscow may be planning an imminent invasion of its neighbours. However, the Kremlin denied planning an invasion of Ukraine.
Putin had accused the West of compromising the region’s security by expanding relations between NATO and the Ukrainian alliance-Moscow’s allegations threatened Russia and when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991.
Earlier this month, Russia announced a draft security agreement calling for NATO to refuse to join Ukraine and other former Soviet countries and withdraw troops and weapons from Central and Eastern Europe.
The proposal was presented to the US and its allies. Still, it included elements that the West had already excluded, such as Russia’s effective veto against Ukraine’s future accession to NATO.
NATO Secretary-General emphasized on December 17 that all security negotiations with Moscow should be taken into account the concerns of the alliance and involve Ukraine and other partners.