Russia urges talks to avoid military escalation

December 15, 2021 - 11:8

TEHRAN - Russian President Vladimir Putin has told British Prime Minister Boris Johnson of an urgent need for talks to end NATO’s military eastward expansion.

Putin also called for a halt to the deployment of heavy offensive weapons near Russian borders, which the Kremlin says has forced Moscow to increase its own defensive capabilities along its borders. Russian officials have already noted a legally binding treaty offering firm guarantees that NATO would not expand any further east, or place offensive weapons in member countries bordering Russia. Putin told Johnson that Russia has been already devising draft documents on that matter and negotiations should begin “immediately.”

The Kremlin’s readout of the phone conversation shows Putin showed specific examples of “Kiev’s destructive line on the disruption of the Minsk agreements” as an “uncontested basis for resolving the internal Ukrainian crisis.”

Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov says NATO would face “dire consequences” if it continued to threaten Russian security. He says a “lack of progress towards a political and diplomatic solution to this problem will lead to our response being military and technological”.

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