Russia denies report it has responded to US proposal on Ukraine
Russia is denying reports that it has responded to the U.S.’s proposal regarding the situation in Ukraine.
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Grushko told Russian state news agency RIA Novosti that reports of Moscow responding to the U.S.’s proposal were “not true,” according to The Associated Press.
Grushko’s denial comes after a State Department spokesperson confirmed to The Hill on Monday that the U.S. “received a written follow-up from Russia.” The department did not provide further details, writing in a statement that “It would be unproductive to negotiate in public.”
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, however, told reporters on Tuesday that there was “confusion” on the matter, asserting that Moscow is still preparing its response to Washington’s proposition, according to the AP.
He said the communications dispatched to the West “were other considerations, on a somewhat different issue,” according to the AP.
RIA Novosti reported that Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov communicated with the U.S., including Secretary of State Antony Blinken, about “the principle of indivisibility of security,” according to the AP. The Russian news agency cited an unnamed senior diplomat in the Russian Foreign Ministry when reporting on Lavrov’s message.
The uncertainty regarding Russia’s communications comes as tensions are rising between Moscow and Kyiv, as Russia has amassed more than 100,000 troops near the Ukrainian border. The military presence is causing concern among the U.S. and its allies that Russia is planning an incursion against Ukraine, but Moscow has denied having any such intentions.
Moscow and Washington have been engaging in diplomatic talks for weeks, but no breakthroughs have been achieved. Russia is demanding that Ukraine be blocked from joining NATO and that the military alliance stop putting weapons near the Russian border and refrain from moving into Eastern Europe, according to the AP, but both the U.S. and NATO have said such requests are nonstarters.
Tensions came to a head on Monday when the U.S. and Russia publicly faced off at a United Nations Security Council Meeting over the situation in Ukraine.
U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Linda Thomas-Greenfield said Russia’s actions were “a threat to peace and security as anyone can imagine.” Russia, however, rejected that sentiment — the country’s Ambassador Vasily Nebenzya instead said Washington was “whipping up tensions and rhetoric and are provoking escalation.”