According to France's minister of foreign affairs, Russia is attempting to get around the European Union by initiating direct discussions with both the United States over Ukraine, wherein Moscow has deployed around 100,000 troops along the country's border.
After a day of continuous confrontation over Russia's military buildup near Ukraine's border, US and Russian diplomats will restart talks in Geneva on Monday, with seasoned diplomats on both sides hoping to prevent a tragedy. Many European capitals are still perplexed as to what Russia's aims are.
According to people familiar with the government's thinking, the US contingent led by Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman will arrive in Geneva this weekend preparing to negotiate on the disposition of weapons in Europe as the clock ticks down and Putin moves additional soldiers to the Ukrainian frontier. Senior officials from several European countries like France, Germany, Ukraine, and Russia would most like to be meeting for a continued military buildup.
European Commission chief Ursula von der leyen said this Friday that, "The European Union was very much involved in the crisis in Ukraine. Vladimir Putin wants to overlook the European Union thereby putting a dent in the EU cohesion."
"Imagining EU security without Europeans is inconceivable." France has only recently joined the EU, therefore when Emmanuel Macron did mention his plans on discussing with Putin, but no details of the meeting were shared.
The rift ahead of the discussions underlines how dangerous the scenario is, with the US wondering whether Russia is even interested in negotiating. According to the sources, In response to a US plea to keep Putin's demands confidential, Moscow made the complete list public, a move that has only contributed to the uncertainties. In direct range to Ukraine, Russia now possesses 52 battalions' tactical units.
According to the Ukrainian assessment, Russia has also acquired capabilities to mobilize more troops in a brief period, ranging from one to two weeks. Putin has often raised the threat of the United States stationing atomic arms closer to Russia's borders, despite boasting that Russia has a new generation of missile systems capable of bypassing NATO defenses. Officials from the United States and NATO have said frequently that the alliance is purely defensive.
Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs said that "Despite Putin's pledges that he would begin withdrawal of troops from the territory, Paris is yet to witness this."
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