HomeWorld NewsRussia responds in writing to US ahead of Blinken-Lavrov call

Russia responds in writing to US ahead of Blinken-Lavrov call

Moscow’s response comes days after Washington submitted its personal paperwork to Moscow and ahead of a deliberate telephone call between US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov Tuesday.

A senior State Department official and a State Department spokesperson confirmed Monday that they “received a written follow-up from Russia.”

“It would be unproductive to negotiate in public, so we’ll leave it up to Russia if they want to discuss their response,” the spokesperson mentioned. “We remain fully committed to dialogue to address these issues and will continue to consult closely with our Allies and partners, including Ukraine.”

Public reactions to these US written responses — in which administration officers mentioned the US voiced willingness to work with Russia on issues like arms management however refused to give room on NATO’s “open door” coverage — have been largely pessimistic.

It is unclear if Moscow’s written response, first reported by the Washington Post, was obtained earlier than or after Monday’s UN Security Council assembly over Moscow’s escalation alongside the border with Ukraine, which ended in a standoff between the US and Russia.

US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield informed reporters following the session, in which the US accused Russia of planning to mass tens of 1000’s of troops alongside the Belarus-Ukraine border, that the US “called for this meeting to allow the Russians to give us an explanation of what their actions are.”

“We didn’t hear much,” she mentioned. “They didn’t give us the answers that any of us would have hoped that they would provide.”

The open assembly on the UN headquarters in New York proceeded Monday regardless of opposition from China and Russia.

US officers have repeatedly urged Moscow to take a diplomatic path ahead, warning {that a} renewed invasion of Ukraine would outcome in swift and vital sanctions — a message reiterated by President Joe Biden on Monday whereas the assembly was underway.

Tense UN assembly

In her remarks to the Security Council Monday, Thomas-Greenfield mentioned, “We continue to hope Russia chooses the path of diplomacy over the path of conflict in Ukraine. But we cannot just ‘wait and see.’ It is crucial that this Council address the risk that their aggressive and destabilizing behavior poses across the globe.”

She spoke of Russia’s buildup of greater than 100,000 troops alongside its border with Ukraine, in addition to US intelligence that Russia has moved practically 5,000 troops into Belarus and intends to mass “more than 30,000 troops near the Belarus-Ukraine border … by early February.”

“If Russia further invades Ukraine, none of us will be able to say we didn’t see it coming. And the consequences will be horrific,” Thomas-Greenfield mentioned.

Russian Ambassador to the UN Vasily Nebenzia claimed UN colleagues are “whipping up tensions and rhetoric,” saying that the US and others wished battle to happen.

“This deployment of Russian troops in our own territory is getting our Western and US colleagues to say that there’s going to be a planned military action and even an act of aggression … the military action of Russia against Ukraine that they’re all assuring us is going to take place in just a few weeks’ time if not a few days’ time. There, however, is no proof confirming such a serious accusation whatsoever being put forward,” he mentioned in translated remarks on the assembly.

“You are almost calling for this, you want it to happen. You’re waiting for it to happen, as if you want to make your words become a reality. This is despite the fact that we are constantly rejecting these allegations and this is despite the fact that no threat of a planned invasion into Ukraine from the lips of any Russian politician or public figure over all of this period has been made,” Nebenzia mentioned.

Thomas-Greenfield responded that it was Moscow that was being provocative, not the US or its Security Council companions.

“We have made clear our commitment to the path of diplomacy. I hope our Russian colleagues will also choose this path and engage peacefully with the international community, including Ukraine,” she mentioned.

This story has been up to date with extra particulars Monday.

CNN’s Kylie Atwood, Laura Ly and Michael Conte contributed to this report.

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