Russia delivers written response to US over Ukraine-related proposal

Russia has delivered a written response to the U.S.’s proposal for deescalating tensions at the Ukrainian border.

“We can confirm we received a written follow-up from Russia,” a State Department spokesperson said in a statement to The Hill on Monday.

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

News of the response was first reported by The Washington Post.

The U.S. delivered its own response last week to Moscow’s demands that NATO guarantee it will not expand any further eastward and never permit Ukraine to join as a member, conditions that the U.S. has deemed to be nonstarters.

The contents of the U.S.’s response were not disclosed, though Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said soon after that they left “little ground for optimism.”

According to Peskov, the letter included “no positive response on the main issue,” though he stated that there was room to expand on Russia’s secondary issues.

As the Post noted, Russia’s response to the U.S. comes just one day before Secretary of State Antony Blinken is set to have a phone call with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. The top Russian diplomat has previously indicated that Russia will not engage in extended negotiations.

“We won’t allow our proposals to be drowned in endless discussions,” Lavrov said last week.

Earlier in the day, representatives of Moscow and Washington faced off at a U.N. Security Council meeting, with U.S. Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield saying Russia’s moves, including massing tens of thousands of troops at Ukraine’s border, “strike at the very heart of the U.N. Charter.”

“This is the largest, hear me clearly, mobilization of troops in Europe in decades,” she said.

Tags Antony Blinken Linda Thomas-Greenfield Russia Russia-Ukraine conflict Sergei Lavrov Ukraine Ukraine-Russia border Ukraine-Russia conflict

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