(Moscow) Russia’s foreign minister said on Monday that talks between the United States and Russia over guarantees from the West that NATO would not integrate Ukraine into its forces would resume immediately after the holiday.
“We will carry out the main task of negotiations with the United States, which will begin immediately after the New Year celebrations,” Sergei Lavrov said in an interview on Monday. In Russia, New Year’s celebrations last ten days until January 9.
Earlier this month, Moscow submitted a security paper to NATO. Russia has specifically called on Western allies to abandon the integration of Ukraine or any other state as a result of the former USSR. He also wants NATO to withdraw its troops to Central and Eastern Europe.
Washington and its allies refused to make such promises, but agreed to negotiate.
Among its demands, Moscow has also developed a proposal for a Russia-US defense agreement and the signing of a security agreement with NATO.
The talks come amid heightened tensions as Russian troops continue to be stationed near the border with Ukraine, raising fears of an invasion.
Moscow has denied any intent to invade its neighbor, but is seeking legal guarantees to prevent NATO from expanding into Ukraine or deploying military equipment there.
According to Minister Lavro, “It is important that our proposals do not turn into endless negotiations known to the West. There must be an end to all these diplomatic efforts.
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has called a meeting of the NATO-Russia Council on January 12, confirmed last Saturday by a representative of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov confirmed that the meeting would take place on Monday. He called the meeting “important” but said details should be created and the date could change.
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