US President Joe Biden and German Chancellor Angela Merkel agreed in a telephone interview on Wednesday to call on Russia to cut troops on the Ukrainian border as the situation on the ground escalates .
The two leaders want to ask Russia “to reduce its recent reinforcements of troops” on the eastern border of Ukraine, in order to allow “a de-escalation” of the situation, said the spokesperson for Angela Merkel in a statement. .
In the morning, German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer accused Russia of “provocation” in the Ukrainian dossier and indicated that the dossier was being followed “with concern”. “We will do everything to ensure that things do not degenerate,” she added, welcoming Kiev for its reaction so far “measured”.
A subject raised by NATO members
Moscow has massed tens of thousands of soldiers on the borders of this former Soviet republic which aspires to join NATO. At the same time, violence has resumed since the beginning of the year in the conflict in eastern Ukraine between Kiev forces and pro-Russian separatists.
The defense ministers of the thirty NATO member countries spoke on Wednesday during a videoconference meeting with the head of American diplomacy, Antony Blinken, who came especially to the Alliance headquarters in Brussels, the subject of tensions with Russia in Ukraine. President Biden also proposed Tuesday to his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin a summit in a third country “in the near future”.
Relations between Moscow and Washington are at an all-time low, weighed down by disagreements over a number of issues from Ukraine to Syria, accusations of electoral interference, espionage and cyber attacks.