MOSCOW (Fwrd Axis) — Russia and the United States will hold talks in the new year over security concerns as tensions over Ukraine continue to rise, a Russian spokesperson said on Monday.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said in an interview on Russian state TV that the two countries will meet in in Geneva on January 10.
“It is with the U.S. that we will carry out the main work of negotiations, which will take place immediately after the new year holidays end,” Lavrov said.
The holidays in Russia will last for 10 days, through Jan. 9.
Earlier this month, Russia wrote up draft security documents demanding that NATO deny membership to Ukraine along with other demands in preparation for the meeting. This comes amid Russian troop buildup near Ukraine and fears of an invasion building.
Russian President Vladmir Putin met with U.S. President Joe Biden virtually earlier this month and denied Russia has plans to attack Ukraine but wants guarantees to rule out NATO expansion and weapons deployment there.
Biden said the United States would respond ‘with force’ if Russia goes ahead with its plans to invade Ukraine.
“President Biden voiced the deep concerns of the United States and our European Allies about Russia’s escalation of forces surrounding Ukraine and made clear that the U.S. and our Allies would respond with strong economic and other measures in the event of military escalation,” the White House said in a statement.
“Our proposals aren’t wound up in endless discussions, which the West is famous for and which it knows how to do, that there is a result of all these diplomatic efforts,” Lavrov said Monday.
Biden and Putin met in Genva last summer for over four hours and again earlier this month. The White House has not yet confirmed the date for the meeting between officials from the two countries.