by Bernard P. Lawson and H. Haverstock, The Chicago Times
December 12, 2021
MOSCOW — Russian President Vladimir Putin and the Biden administration have agreed to more talks amid tensions over a Russian army buildup near Ukraine, according to the Kremlin.
The Kremlin said Putin and Biden agreed to hold more talks during a video conversation on December 7 that focused on East-West relations which are currently strained by Russia’s force buildup near Ukraine.
Biden warned Putin that if Russia invades Ukraine, the NATO will impose “severe economic and other measures,” while Putin has requested guarantees that NATO will not expand further east.
According to a senior congressional aide, the Biden administration informed members of Congress that they have reached an agreement with Germany to shut down the Nord Stream 2 pipeline if Russia invades Ukraine.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov stated that Putin had no reason to be optimistic after speaking with Biden because of significant disagreements between Russia and the US over Moscow’s so-called “red lines” that it does not want the West to violate.
Aside from further NATO expansion eastward, Russia has stated that it does not want certain offensive weaponry stationed in countries bordering it, such as Ukraine.
Putin informed Biden on December 7 that Russian troops were on Russian territory and did not constitute a threat to anyone, according to the Kremlin.