Blinken says US responded to Moscow’s requests regarding Ukraine


Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the United States had provided a written response to Moscow’s requests, amid Russia’s military buildup near Ukraine.

“There are important things to work on if Russia really wants to work with them, and it depends on President Putin and we will see how they react,” Blinken told the State Department on Wednesday.

The Russia Response, coordinated with Ukraine and European allies, outlines concerns about things the United States and its allies believe Russia is doing to undermine security and stability, assesses Russia’s concerns, and includes the United States’ own proposals for common ground. The US response emphasizes Ukraine’s sovereignty, while suggesting “potential for progress” in areas such as arms control in Europe and ways to increase transparency and stability, Blinken said. . The document responds to a list that the Russian foreign minister gave to the United States last week.

Blinken on responding to Russia’s demands


“All in all, it opens up a serious diplomatic path, if Russia chooses it,” Blinken said. “… We are open to dialogue. We prefer diplomacy. And we are ready to move forward where there is a possibility of communication and cooperation, if Russia defuses its aggression against Ukraine, stops inflammatory rhetoric and approaches discussions on Europe’s future security in a spirit of reciprocity.”

The US response has also been forwarded to Congress, Blinken said, adding that he will brief members of Congress on the matter on Wednesday afternoon. The document will not be made public, the secretary of state said.

Still, it’s “not a formal negotiating document,” Blinken said. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) also responds to Russia.

“There is no daylight between the United States and our allies and partners on these issues,” Blinken said.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg confirmed that the alliance had submitted its own written responses to Russia, “in parallel with the United States”.

Blinken said he plans to speak with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in the coming days.

Mr Biden met virtually with European leaders earlier this week as countries work out how to handle Russia’s threat to Ukraine.

The president said on Tuesday that personally sanctioning Putin was not out of order, and that the United States consider export controls regarding semiconductors in the event of an invasion of Ukraine, which Blinken confirmed on Wednesday.

The Pentagon has placed 8,500 American soldiers on heightened alert, if requested by NATO.

The embassy in Kyiv will remain open and the United States will continue to maintain a “strong presence there,” Blinken said.

Nonetheless, he said, “our message now to all Americans in Ukraine is to seriously consider leaving using commercial or private transportation options,” adding that the United States may provide loans to Americans who cannot afford the cost of a commercial ticket.

The State Department has already ordered families employees of the US Embassy in Kiev from. CBS News has also learned of a detachment of eight Marines from the Maritime Security Enhancement Unit recently deployed to support an increased security presence at the embassy.

While the United States has been working through diplomatic avenues to resolve the crisis, it is also preparing for the possibility of Russian aggression, he said.

“Right now the document is with them, and the ball is in their court,” Blinken said.

Christina Ruffini, Olivia Gazis and Eleanor Watson of CBS News contributed to this report


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