The US is “prepared” to speak with Russia about the security proposals it has made in recent days, although it warned that it does not agree with some of them and once again threatened “severe” economic sanctions for any attack on Ukraine.
“We are prepared to talk about those proposals, but there are some things in those documents that the Russians know are unacceptable,” a senior government official, who spoke to reporters on condition of anonymity, said without elaborating.
Russia on Wednesday handed the US documents containing security provisions that it wishes to negotiate with Washington and its NATO allies as tensions grow around Ukraine.
In these documents, Moscow demands that NATO withdraw the promises it made to Ukraine to admit it to the Atlantic Alliance and urges it to move its military maneuvers away from Russian borders, in addition to calling for the establishment of a minimum distance between ships and planes. Russian and American military.
Likewise, the Kremlin again asked the White House to stop placing short- and medium-range missiles in Europe, something that NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has already rejected.
The US official did not say which of those proposals are unacceptable to the US.
“There are others – he conceded – with which we can work and that deserves some discussion. That said, this will be done with our allies. Everything that has to do with European security will be done with our European allies in the room.”
Currently, the US is talking about the Russian demands with its allies and plans to respond to Moscow with a “more concrete proposal” sometime next week, the official said.
That source also took the opportunity to join the threats to Russia that have been reiterated in recent days by NATO, the G-7, and the leaders of the European Union (EU).
Using language similar to those institutions, the official assured that “any aggression against Ukraine will bring massive consequences and will have a very high price.”
Specifically, he explained that the US is evaluating the imposition of “severe” economic sanctions that have not been used before.
Washington and Kyiv believe that Russia is preparing an incursion into Ukrainian territory that could occur in early 2022, and that therefore it has deployed between 70,000 and 94,000 soldiers on its border with the neighboring country, according to estimates by US and Ukrainian intelligence.
Meanwhile, Moscow denounces that Kyiv is preparing an attack to recover the separatist territories supported by Moscow in eastern Ukraine.