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Blinkin in Kiev calls for unity against Russia

Blinkin met Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Wednesday, then continued to visit Berlin and hold talks with France, Germany and the United Kingdom on Thursday.

The consultations will take place before the urgent meeting between Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Geneva on Friday.

Difficult before conversations

The tones of Moscow and Washington are harsh before the hearing. Russia continues to demand in writing that the NATO military alliance not be expanded to include former Soviet republics such as Ukraine.

In addition, Moscow announced that a major military exercise will be held in Belarus, Ukraine’s neighbor to the north.

Blinken’s answer in Kiev was clear: No written promise about NATO restrictions is out of the question. In addition, the United States sends $200 million, or about $1.8 billion, in military aid to Ukraine.

“Our strength depends on whether we can maintain our agreement, which includes an agreement with Ukraine,” Blinken said after meeting Zelensky.

– I think that Moscow’s goal is to sow division between and within our country. We must and will not allow it, Blinken continued, stressing the importance of resolving the conflict diplomatically and peacefully.

“The invasion is not present”

At the same time, the chief US diplomat noted the fact that there are more than 100,000 Russian soldiers near the Ukrainian border, and that the number “could double in a short time.”

On Wednesday, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov reiterated Moscow’s position: there is no relevant invasion of Ukraine. But anything other than the “waterproof” promise of NATO security guarantees – including a promise to turn away from Ukraine – is unacceptable to the Kremlin.