Biden to speak to Ukraine's president

President Biden plans to speak with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky on Sunday amid heightened tensions with Russia and ahead of a series of meetings in Europe to be attended by Moscow, Washington and NATO allies.

A White House official confirmed to CNBC on Friday that Zelensky and Biden will speak, saying Biden also intends to  review plans for diplomatic moves aimed “to help de-escalate the situation in the region.” 

Biden earlier on Friday told reporters that Russia would face severe sanctions if it invades Ukraine, a message he said he had related to Russian President Vladimir PutinVladimir Vladimirovich PutinThe hidden blessing of China's and Russia's hostility Former president returns to Ukraine ahead of court hearing McCaul says US withdrawal from Afghanistan has emboldened Russia on Ukraine MORE this week.


“I made it clear to President Putin that we will have severe sanctions, we will increase our presence in Europe, with NATO allies,” Biden said.

Russia has amassed troops on its border with Ukraine, provoking fears of a conflict. 

Biden on Thursday  held a 50-minute call with Putin in an effort to lower the tensions 

Russia invaded Ukraine and annexed the Crimean Peninsula in 2014.