March 22, 2023

The Political Chronicle

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Anthony Blingen and Sergey Lavrov meet in Geneva to try to defuse crisis


The head of US diplomacy, Anthony Blinken, and his Russian envoy, Sergei Lavrov, met in Geneva, Switzerland, on Friday to discuss rising tensions in Ukraine, despite strong differences and the gathering of hundreds of thousands of Russian soldiers. Ukrainian borders.

US and Russian diplomats gave a few hours in Geneva on Friday, January 21 for a final attempt to defuse. Ukrainian crisis, Washington suspects that Moscow wants to invade its neighbor, despite threats of retaliation.

Meeting between Sergei Lavrov and Anthony Blink De Gus is the last Boss of intense diplomatic ballet that began 11 days ago, already in Geneva, between their delegates, in a palace on the shores of Lake Geneva.

Despite sharp differences, they agreed to continue talks despite the fact that hundreds of thousands of Russian troops had gathered on the border with Ukraine.

If the diplomatic queue of January 10 had lasted nearly eight hours, the face-to-face Blingen-Lavrov should not have lasted more than two hours.

The two experienced negotiators have known each other for many years. Anthony Blingen is known for his unwavering silence, while Sergei Lavrov is very quiet and has a biting verb.

“Quick, Strict and Unified Response”

“We have complex problems and it will take time to solve them. I did not expect to solve them in Geneva,” Anthony Blinken said in Berlin on Thursday. .

On Wednesday, President Joe Biden ruled that Vladimir Putin in Ukraine would “enter Ukraine,” and promised a “quick, tough and united response from the United States and our allies” if the Russian military crossed the border.

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On Thursday, the Kremlin condemned “unstable” comments that could provide ideas for “hotheads among Ukrainian delegates.”

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Russia, which has already supported the uprising in the eastern part of the country, which has annexed Crimea, killing more than 13,000 people since 2014, has denied any plans for an invasion. But the Kremlin insists on written guarantees for its security, including the promise that Kiev will not join NATO and will not seek to expand its alliance into what it considers its backyard.

Russia wants to get a “kind of non-occupation agreement.”

The United States has already rejected these claims as unreasonable.

New Cold War?

Anthony Blinken arrives in Geneva after an express tour that took him from Kiev to Berlin, the city’s symbol of reuniting Europe after the Cold War, to discuss with German, French and British allies.

In a speech before leaving for Switzerland, Anthony Bingley recalled: “Allowing Russia to pass these policies without punishment will take us to a time of great danger and instability. கூர்ந்தார்.

“It sends a message to others around the world that these policies may be sacrificed,” he warned.

But the door was not closed because the Biden administration had repeatedly stated that it was ready to discuss fears for the safety of the Russians.

During initial talks in Switzerland last week, Wendy Sherman, the US Assistant Secretary of State, offered to draw inspiration from the Interim Nuclear Forces (INF) arms reduction agreement signed during the Cold War with Moscow.

In 2019, former US President Donald Trump pulled out of the deal, accusing Russia of violating it.

President Biden said on Wednesday that he was ready for a new summit with Vladimir Putin in Geneva after June 16, 2021.

Russia has not denied plans for missiles and maneuvers, but has said it is not necessary. For good measure, it announced major naval maneuvers on Thursday in the Atlantic, Arctic, Pacific and even the Mediterranean in January and February.

On Wednesday, US diplomat Vladimir Putin urged the United States to choose a “peaceful path” and made it clear that he would not provide written answers to the most detailed requests made by the Russians a few weeks earlier about the case.

As for Washington, the clock is ticking, with the United States accusing Russia of having “preemptive” agents in Ukraine last week that could serve as an “excuse for an invasion.”

With AFP