On January 10, diplomatic negotiations between Russia and the USA on the situation in Ukraine and Moscow’s demands for mutual security guarantees took place in Geneva. With regard to the results of the talks and other diplomatic perspectives, Washington was rather cool after the meeting.
In a conference call with journalists after almost eight hours of talks, US Vice Secretary of State Wendy Sherman cautiously assessed the negotiations with her counterpart Sergei Ryabkov as “open and direct” and said that both sides had raised their security concerns. Washington is said to have made it clear to the Russian side that some proposals are unacceptable for the US:
“However, we have resolutely opposed security proposals that are simply out of the question for the US.”
According to the diplomat, the US will not allow the current NATO policy to be broken off. She pointed out that this is a “cooperation of sovereign states”. In addition, Washington would not make any decisions about Ukraine, Europe or NATO without clarifying all issues with allies. Sherman stated:
“We will not allow anyone to slam NATO’s open doors.”
The US side is said to have shown its willingness to continue talks on conflict issues such as the limitation of maneuvers or the stationing of missiles. Sherman had threatened Moscow with severe consequences if Russia invaded Ukraine.
Following the negotiations in Geneva, White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki also spoke primarily of an alleged threat to Ukraine from Russia. She expressed her hope that Moscow would take the diplomatic route and move “its 100,000 soldiers back to the barracks on the border with Ukraine”:
“A number of issues were of course discussed during this meeting, including a replay of what is at stake if they decide to move forward and invade Ukraine.”
In view of the NATO presence in the Black Sea off the coast of Russia and the allegations by Kiev and the Western states about alleged preparations for an invasion of Ukraine, Moscow approached the alliance with proposals for legally binding mutual security guarantees. Among other things, Russia is calling for less large-scale military exercises in Europe, arms control and a ban on the stationing of NATO weapons on the territory of Ukraine.
A meeting of the NATO-Russia Council will take place on January 12th. As part of these talks, Moscow intends to continue negotiations on the required security guarantees.
more on the subject– Russia rules out compromises in Geneva talks