U.S. Secretary of State Blinken: Ukrainian tensions escalate, breakthrough with Putin unlikely

Secretary of State Anthony winks Downplayed prospect of diplomatic breakthrough on Sunday Moscow before high-risk U.S.Russia This week’s talks aim to deter Russian aggression Ukraine.

“I don’t think we’re going to see any breakthroughs,” Mr. flash Speaking of talks between Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman and Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov, officially scheduled to begin in Geneva on Monday.

“We’ll see if there’s a reason for progress, but to make real progress, it’s hard to see that happening when the situation continues to escalate, when Russia gun on head Ukraine 100,000 soldiers near its borders [and] The possibility of doubling it in a very short period of time,” Mr. flash told ABC’s “This Week.”

Sobering remarks from Biden administration’s top diplomat reflect growing concern in Washington of slow-burning military standoff along the line RussiaUkraine The border could reach a tipping point in the coming days.

Analysts say a fundamentally united front by the United States and its European allies and threats of harsh economic sanctions have so far prevented Russian President Vladimir Putin from launching a full-scale invasion.

But it is unclear who has the upper hand in Geneva.

State Department officials said Ms. Sherman and Mr. Ryabkov would meet at a working dinner on Sunday night to discuss topics for Monday’s talks.

Putin may be looking for a way to de-escalate tensions weeks after making a series of demands to the West.His list includes U.S. assurances that Ukraine Never joining NATO, the US and NATO will limit troops and military equipment to Eastern Europe.

Both the United States and NATO have firmly rejected these demands.

Asked on Sunday if he believed Mr Putin had decided to take control Ukraine, gentlemen. flash responded by saying he uncertain. “I don’t know if a decision has been made,” the secretary of state said, claiming that U.S. officials had given Mr Putin a “way forward.”

“One is through diplomacy and dialogue; the other is through deterrence and huge consequences Russia if it invades again Ukraine,” gentlemen. flash told the ABC. “We’re about to test what path President Putin wants to take this week.”

For months, concerns have grown that Putin wants to expand his gains in 2014, when he Russia Forcibly annexed the Crimea peninsula Ukraine, a former Soviet republic with a pro-Western government that has been the arena of tense geopolitical wrangling between the two countries for years Moscow and the West.

Ben Wolfgang contributed to this report.

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