US President Joe Byden and Russian President Vladimir Putin have agreed to hold a summit on “European Security and Strategic Stability,” France’s Elysee Palace said of Putin and France’s President Emmanuel Macron. Eastern Ukraine mentioned earlier Monday, shortly after both announced measures to tackle the ceasefire agreement.
“Presidents Biden and Putin have each accepted the principles of such a summit,” the palace said in a statement, adding that it would only be held if Russia did not invade Ukraine.
“All stakeholders” may be involved in further talks after the US-Russia summit, Macron said.
Development began after Macron made separate phone calls to leaders, including Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
The palace said the contents of the summit would be outlined by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergeĭ Viklov during the meeting scheduled for February 24, “Russia will not proceed with military action. To the condition “was warned.
Spokesman Jen Psaki said the United States was “always ready for diplomacy,” but “if Russia chooses war instead, it is ready to impose swift and serious consequences.” rice field.
“And now Russia seems to be preparing for a full-scale assault on Ukraine soon,” she said.
In a statement following the agreement on further diplomatic efforts with the Macron, the Kremlin said: “Normandy-style leaders” added that the effort “should facilitate the restoration of the ceasefire and ensure progress in the resolution of disputes in Donbas.”
However, reports of violence in which Ukraine accused pro-Russian actors surged this week in the Luhansk and Donetsk regions of eastern Ukraine, where pro-Russian separatists challenged the Ukrainian government for control of its territory.
According to the Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, there were 66 ceasefire violations by the “armed Russian formation” along the 155-mile border of Donbas on Saturday, many of which are related to weapons banned by the Minsk agreement. .. Ukrainian troops also said that “provocative firing” killed two Ukrainian soldiers and injured four.
Russian media have accused Ukrainian troops of the bombardment. Zelensky provoked the accusation and called it a “pure lie.”
The Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs urged a swift response to the ceasefire breach from the international community, saying that “appropriate reaction and lack of a neutral position will only help in further escalation.”
US intelligence has warned Russia using the “false flag” case as a justification for military action to invade Ukraine’s territory.
The day before, Denis Pushilin, the leader of Donetsk’s self-proclaimed separatist government, ordered the evacuation and general military mobilization of civilians in rebel-controlled territories in eastern Ukraine. He portrays the Ukrainian government as an invader after video alleging that Ukraine is ordering an imminent attack in the area, saying that Russian citizens in rebel-controlled areas are at risk. He pushed the claim and justified the evacuation of the inhabitants.
Ukraine quickly pushed back its claims, saying there were no orders to use force in these territories. “This is an attempt to provoke our army,” said Oleksiy Danilov, Secretary of the National Security Council of Ukraine.
By Saturday morning, separatists said thousands of residents of Luhansk and Donetsk had fled to Russia. Putin reportedly provided each evacuee with 10,000 rubles (about $ 130). This is equivalent to the average half-monthly wage in eastern Ukraine.
Russian Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov also claimed on Friday that atrocities were being committed against Russian-speaking people in eastern Ukraine, and that 300 “mass graves” were found in Donbas. He argued that Western nations were ignoring genocide suspicions.
Russian state media also reported several major explosions in Lugansk and Donetsk on Friday. One is related to the Lugansk pipeline. State-backed media Sputnik News blamed the Ukrainian army for the incident.
Estonian President Alar Karis wrote on Twitter about the situation: Whatever the result, the message could not be clarified. Unfortunately, nothing from the Russian state can be trusted. “
Russia also conducted nuclear training on Saturday, including the launch of intercontinental ballistic missiles and cruise missiles, and Putin asked Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko to observe.
The nuclear stance followed a joint military exercise between Russia and Belarus, including the placement of 30,000 Russian troops near the northern border of Ukraine.
Russia’s ally, Belarus, said on Sunday, alongside Russia, that the two countries have extended joint training, raising further concerns about the ongoing buildup of Russian troops along the Ukrainian border.
“Now they justify the continuation of the exercises (quoted” exercises “) about the situation in eastern Ukraine, the situation they created by continuing. Blinken told CNN in an interview on Sunday.