Biden wants to prevent Russia-Ukraine conflict, but experts say time is running out

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  • US President Joe Biden is expected to give a stern warning to Russian President Vladimir Putin against attacking Ukraine during a video call on Tuesday.
  • Experts say time is running out for the US to stop further hostilities between neighbors.
  • This call is expected around 3 PM LONDON TIME.
  • There are widespread concerns about Russian troop movements along the border with Ukraine and increasingly aggressive rhetoric from Moscow towards Kiev.

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US President Joe Biden is expected to give Russian President Vladimir Putin a stern warning against attacking Ukraine during a video call on Tuesday, but experts say it is up to the US to prevent further hostilities between neighboring countries. Time is Running Out.

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The call comes amid fears that Russia is planning to launch some sort of military action against Ukraine following Russian troop movements on the border and increasingly aggressive rhetoric from Moscow to Kiev.

For his part, Putin said on November 30 that Russia was concerned about military exercises being conducted near the border in Ukraine, saying these were a threat to Moscow.

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He has insisted that Russia is free to move troops around its territory and has denied claims that the country may be preparing to invade Ukraine, calling such assumptions “alarmist”. .

Close adherents of Russian politics are not convinced that Russia’s intentions towards Ukraine – which was a part of the Soviet Union until the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991 – are benign though.

Many experts (and leaders of Ukraine) believe that Putin – which said in 2005 that the breakup of the union was the “greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the century”. – Desires to rebuild the Soviet Empire, Russia often seeks to increase or impose its influence on former Soviet republics such as Belarus and Ukraine. Russia opposes Ukraine’s aspirations to join NATO and its neighboring European Union.

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Experts also disagree that Biden, and allied nations in Europe, could strike a deal with Putin, warning that the window of opportunity to find a peaceful solution to rising tensions between Russia, Ukraine and the wider West is closing.

Russia expert Timothy Ashe, a senior emerging markets sovereign strategist at BlueBay Asset Management, said the Putin-Biden call would be “very difficult” and it was “difficult to see where the agreement would come from.”

Ashe said in a statement, “Putin wants security guarantees on further expansion of NATO, non-aligned status for Ukraine and the re-arming of Ukraine and limits on the presence of NATO troops in Ukraine. Biden cannot provide that, and Ukraine will never give it.” Wouldn’t agree – unless under extreme pressure.” Note Monday evening.

“Biden will try to stick to sanctions and use the carrot of more negotiations and buy time for Ukraine to continue to build its defenses. [The] The question is, is Putin willing to wait?”

Ashe said Putin might be thinking that now is the best time to impose his will on Ukraine and the West.

Before the call, the Kremlin said Tuesday morning that it wants “good, predictable relations with the US” and “never plans to attack anyone,” Reuters reported. However, it says, “We have red lines.”

The Kremlin also said it did not expect a success at the Biden-Putin meeting, but called for a calm mind, noting that Putin was ready to listen to Biden’s concerns and set up his own. Were.

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There have been reports of an increase in the number of Russian troops on Ukraine’s border for weeks, with movements warning NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg that NATO members should prepare for the worst when it comes to Russia and Ukraine.

“You can discuss whether the probability of an intrusion is 20% or 80%, it doesn’t matter. We need to be prepared for the worst,” Stoltenberg told reporters after a meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Riga, Latvia, on November 30.

The NATO chief, referring to Crimea, said, “There is no certainty, no clarity about what the Russian intentions are, and they can indeed develop and change.”

Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014 and has been accused of sending troops and weapons to support a pro-Russian insurgency in the Donbass region of eastern Ukraine, two self-declared republics, although Moscow denies this. .

Maxim Samorukov, a fellow at the Carnegie Moscow Center, wrote Monday that “Putin is very clear about what he wants in Ukraine and the lengths he is willing to go to to get it.”

“In a matter of days, Putin has said he wants a deal to prevent Ukraine from joining NATO. He also wants a Western promise to never deploy NATO military infrastructure in Ukraine. ” Samorukov said in an editorial.

He said that, in the past year, the Kremlin had two messages for the US “First, Russia attaches paramount importance to Ukraine. Second, its patience with the status quo is running thin, and to take drastic measures to reverse it.” Ready. Status.”

“Putin wants Biden to eventually face an unpleasant dilemma. The message is simple: Washington needs to prepare itself to defeat its fellow Ukraine militarily well, which has been the subject of recent events in Afghanistan. A particularly humiliating re-operation of the U.S. would be. Or it could back down and settle with Moscow on Ukraine,” Samorukov said.

The Kremlin is not under the illusion that the first option will incur huge costs to Russia’s economy and internationally, he said, “but it wants to assure the United States that it is prepared to bear those costs because of Ukraine’s importance.” . Russian national interest.”

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US, European and NATO officials have warned Russia against any military aggression against Ukraine, telling Moscow that it would have serious political and economic consequences, which is already under international sanctions for its annexation of Crimea. .

Since Ukraine is not a member of NATO, the military alliance is not obliged to defend the country. As such, it is uncertain how far the US and EU can go to defend Ukraine.

According to a Downing Street spokesman, the leaders of France, the United States, Britain, Germany and Italy spoke on Monday evening about the escalating tensions between Russia and Ukraine.

“They stressed the need to provide a united front to counter Russian threats and hostilities,” the spokesman said in a statement, adding that he would “to reduce tensions to Russia and its staunch support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity.” We’re calling to confirm.” ,

The spokesman said the leader would speak again after Biden’s talks with Putin. According to Reuters, the Putin-Biden video call is expected to take place around 3 p.m. London time.

Russia also does not see any special hope from this meeting. On Monday, on the eve of the call, the Kremlin described the state of US-Russia relations as “quite disappointing”, Reuters said.

Meanwhile, Russia continues to look east towards Asia for trade and diplomatic ties. Putin and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi signed more than two dozen deals in various fields during a bilateral meeting in New Delhi on Monday, and agreed to cooperate on regional security.

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