Lavrov: Russian-Western talks on security guarantees in January

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Wednesday that the first talks between Russia and the United States, Russia and NATO on the security guarantees required by Moscow against the backdrop of the Ukrainian crisis are expected to take place in January.

In an interview with i media Russians, Lavrov said: “It was agreed that bilateral contact between the Russian and American negotiators would take place early next year, a first round”.

The negotiators have been selected

He added that the negotiators were chosen and accepted by both sides.

Lavrov added that discussions with the participation of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) will begin in that moment “even in January”.

On Tuesday, Assistant US Secretary of State for European Affairs Karen Donfried said she expected dialogue on Ukraine and security in Europe starts “in January” but stressed that some of Moscow’s requests are “unacceptable”.

On Wednesday, Lavrov reiterated the claims of President Vladimir Putin, who called for “serious” discussions and put in guard his opponents from trying to drown the negotiations “in a quagmire “.

NATO infrastructure is getting closer to our borders

The Russian minister said that this process cannot “be eternal because threats constantly arise around us and NATO infrastructures are approaching our borders”, stressing that although Russia does not want conflicts, it is ready to take steps to defend itself.

“We hope that no one else sees conflict as a desirable scenario. We will act resolutely to ensure our security by whatever means we deem appropriate,” he added.

Last week, Russia presented two projects, one directed at the United States and the other at NATO, summarizing its de-escalation demands.

The proposals ask the alliance not to expand to include in particularly Ukraine and to limit Western military cooperation in Eastern Europe and the countries of the former Soviet Union.

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