Madrid Desk, Jan 25 (EFE).- The United States and its allies are committed to maintaining diplomatic discussions with Russia while also making it clear that they will not allow Moscow to undermine Ukraine’s integrity.
The US and its European allies discussed their common approach to the rising tensions over a Russian military buildup near the border with Ukraine at a roundtable talk between president Joe Biden and several European leaders, including the presidents of the European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen, and Council, Charles Michel, as well as Nato secretary-general Jens Stoltenberg, along with French president, Emmanuel Macron, British prime minister Boris Johnson and German chancellor Olaf Scholz, among others, on Monday night
For the time being, the allies advocate dialogue and deterrence to deal with the crisis, although the White House confirmed that it is preparing for a possible deployment of troops in Eastern Europe.
In a statement, the Commission said the leaders “shared the assessment on the seriousness of the situation”, pointing out that they “wish for diplomacy to succeed but are undertaking preparations for all eventualities.”
AVOIDING AGGRESSION AGAINST UKRAINE
Johnson echoed those sentiments, but issued a stark warning in remarks to the House of Commons on Tuesday: “if President Putin were to choose the path of bloodshed and destruction,” the prime minister said, “he must realize that it would be both tragic and futile, and nor should we allow him to believe that he could easily take some smaller portion of Ukraine, to salami slice, because the resistance will be ferocious.
“If Russia pursues this path, many Russian mothers’ sons will not be coming home,” he warned.
France’s Emmanuel Macron, meanwhile, favored working on “a rapid de-escalation” of the Ukraine crisis by issuing “firm and credible” warnings to Russia and at the same time maintaining “a strengthened dialogue” with Moscow.
Biden spoke with reporters at the White House on Monday and said that there was “total unanimity” among the US and its European allies regarding the concentration of Russian troops on its border with Ukraine.
In a subsequent tweet, Biden assured that the leaders had discussed “joint efforts to deter further Russian aggression, such as preparations to impose severe economic costs on Russia and reinforce security on the eastern flank.”
US MOBILIZES TROOPS
The Pentagon has announced that it has placed 8,500 troops on “heightened alert” in preparation for possible deployment to Eastern Europe amid the rise in tensions with Russia over its military buildup along its border with Ukraine.
Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said the bulk of US troops would be deployed in Eastern European countries within the Nato Response Force (NRF), and would therefore be activated only if the Atlantic alliance requests it.
The Kremlin expressed its “concern” about the decision Tuesday, Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in his daily telephone press conference, adding that the US was “aggravating” the situation. EFE