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The United States and Russia try to lower the war tension in Ukraine

2022-01-21T15:08:27.793Z

The secretary of state and the Russian foreign minister meet in Switzerland as Russia continues to build up troops on the border and the Biden administration fears an invasion.



The United States and Russia tried to alleviate this Friday the tension triggered by the threat of an invasion of Ukraine with a heated discussion in Geneva, Switzerland, after which they confirmed that no imminent progress was expected to defuse the crisis.

Armed with seemingly intractable and opposing demands, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met at a "critical moment," the US diplomat said.

With some 100,000 Russian troops massed near Ukraine

, many fear Moscow is preparing an invasion, though Russia denies this.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (left) greets Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov before their meeting in Geneva, Switzerland. Alex Brandon / AP

"We weren't expecting any major breakthrough today, but I think we are now on a clearer path to understand each other's positions," Blinken told reporters after the meeting.

Blinken said Lavrov insisted that Russia had no plans to invade Ukraine, but stressed that

the United States and its allies were not convinced of that.

"We look at what is visible to everyone and it is deeds and actions, and not words, that make the difference," he added.

[White House Warns Russia's Invasion of Ukraine May Be Imminent]

Lavrov, for his part, called the talks "constructive and useful" and said the United States had agreed to give written answers to Russian demands on Ukraine and NATO next week.

That could delay any

impending aggression

, at least for a few days.

But Lavrov was cautious about that promise.

"I can't say if we are on the right track or not," he told reporters.

"We will understand when we receive the United States' written response to all of our proposals."

[USA.

accuses Russia of planning a covert false flag operation to justify the warlike invasion of Ukraine]

Moscow has demanded that the NATO alliance promise that Ukraine, a former Soviet republic, will never be allowed to join.

He also wants allies to withdraw troops and military equipment from parts of Eastern Europe.

The United States and its NATO allies have flatly rejected those demands, saying Russian President Vladimir Putin

knows they are not a good start

, and that they are open to less dramatic moves.

Biden warns Putin that the US will act very differently than in the past if Russia invades Ukraine

Dec. 7, 202101:03

Repeatedly, Washington and its allies have warned of

"severe" consequences

for Russia, including heavy economic sanctions (although not military action), if the invasion occurs.

Blinken repeated that warning Friday before the talks.

He said the United States and its allies were committed to diplomacy, but also committed to "

a united, swift and severe response"

if that proves impossible and Russia decides to continue its aggression against Ukraine.

Source: telemundo

All news articles on 2022-01-21

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