Vladimir Putin, Ukraine, Joe Biden, Russia ged de-escalation in call with Putin, but officials still fear Ukraine invasion

. The call came amid a crisis over Ukraine, where 100000 Russian troops are massed on Ukraines, borders. And U.S. officials are concerned that Russia could invade.. Nick Schifrin is here now to tell us how the call went. Nick good to see you.. So you have been talking to your sources in the administration.. What are they saying about that? Call? Nick SCHIFRIN Amna, a senior administration official who just briefed reporters called the call quote serious and substantive, a kind of setup for the tone and tenor for in person. Discussions between the U.S. and Russian and their allies in early January lasted about 50 minutes and was made at the request of Vladimir Putin, which is unusual and took place after 1100 p.m. in Moscow.. Now, Putin has made it clear. He wants fundamental changes in U.S. and allied policy, a guarantee that Ukraine can never join NATO, a reversal of NATO expansion since 1997, and no U.S. exercises in much of Eastern Europe.. That would reverse decades of U.S. policy. And U.S. officials have made it clear. Some of that is dead on arrival., But today the senior administration official reiterated that the U.S. is eager to hear Russian concerns and priorities and in return, will share U.S. concerns and U.S. priorities most notably that huge mass of additional Russian troops deployed not really only near Ukraine, but really around Ukraine in four different spots, as you can see on this map. Its created by U.S. intelligence, which believes that Russia has planned for as many as 170000 troops to invade.

. The White House reiterated that President Biden told Putin that diplomatic progress could only take place in the context of de escalation of those Russian troops. And Amna. A few minutes after the call ended just before 600 p.m. Eastern Russian state owned media quoted a senior Russian diplomat. As claiming that President Biden promised not to send any quote offensive weapons to Ukraine. At this hour, the White House has not responded to that claim., But in general Amna U.S. officials refer to the weapons they send to Ukraine as defensive, not offensive., AMNA, NAWAZ. So Nick the U.S. says to have any progress they need to see de escalation from Russia first.. Is there any chance of that happening? Nick SCHIFRIN Theres, not really a sign of that. U.S. officials do admit theres some troop movement, but they say those troops have not. De escalated and have not redeployed back inward to Russia. So as the U.S. tries to find a diplomatic off ramp, its also trying to deter a Russian invasion by threatening extensive U.S. and allied economic sanctions. More troops deployed to Eastern European NATO allies and more weapons for Ukraine on top of 450 million worth of weapons, its already sent, including anti tank Javelins.. The U.S. is also working to find steps that Ukraine can make to address Russian concerns in Eastern Ukrainian Donbass region. Where Russian troops partially occupied and where Moscow supports Ukrainian separatists. Longer term, that could include amnesty for those separatists as well as more autonomy and elections in the Donbass.

. But Russian actions have essentially coalesced Ukrainian politics against the Kremlin, making any Ukrainian concessions extremely difficult.. They have also coalesced NATO. And in this country Republicans have warned Biden not to make any concessions to Putin., So those concessions that Russia is asking for its very difficult for the U.S. and their allies to make., AMNA NAWAZ. So Nick you mentioned those upcoming in person. Meetings in January between Russian officials, U.S. officials and their allies., What does that look like What happens next? Nick SCHIFRIN? Yes, so three distinct diplomatic meetings. In early January, the first one January 9 to 10. Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman, will meet her equivalent Deputy Foreign Minister, Sergei Ryabkov., On January 12. Nato and Russia will meet to discuss Russian demands of the future of NATO. And on January 13, the Organization for Security and Co operation in Europe or OSCE, which includes the Russians, the U.S. and the Ukrainians, will meet allowing the Ukrainians to be at the table. Amna. The stakes are, high. Putin could still decide to invade according to U.S. officials. And, as the number three State Department official told us on the show just a few weeks ago. If democracies stand by and allow that invasion to happen, it will embolden autocrats, everywhere. And thats. Why the U.S. is so concerned, and so looking forward to that diplomacy in early January., AMNA NAWAZ That is Nick Schifrin with the very latest on that call just today between Presidents Biden and Putin.

Nick. Thank you so much. NICK SCHIFRIN.

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