The United States, together with the North Atlantic Alliance (NATO), are ready to cooperate with Russia on security guarantees, but Washington cannot immediately sign the corresponding Russian documents. This was stated on December 23 by the US Ambassador to Moscow John Sullivan.
“Together with our NATO allies and partners, we are ready to interact with the Russian authorities and discuss the problems they have voiced. Moreover, our partners in Europe and everyone concerned about the security situation in Europe look forward to engaging with the Russian government on these issues, ”Sullivan said in an interview with Kommersant.
At the same time, according to him, the United States will not compromise on relations with NATO allies in negotiations with the Russian Federation.
“We want stable and predictable relations, but we are not going to compromise our principles and values, and we will show firmness together with our allies and partners,” the diplomat emphasized.
As Sullivan noted, US President Joe Biden made it clear during a personal meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva in June that there are preconditions for the diplomacy that the US and its NATO allies aspire to. The Allies have long-standing principles that they “have adhered to with success in maintaining peace in Europe for decades.”
In addition, according to him, negotiations with the Russian authorities will be most effective in de-escalation in Ukraine. Sullivan explained that this term implies a number of actions, including the withdrawal of Russian troops from the Ukrainian border.
He recalled that yesterday it became known about certain positive shifts in the framework of the trilateral contact group mediated by the OSCE representative. Sullivan expressed hope that a ceasefire agreement will be reached in the region and that the terms of the July 2020 ceasefire will be met.
Earlier that day, a senior US administration official said the US had pledged to negotiate security guarantees with Russia in early January 2022. At the same time, he stressed that the United States believes that the success of the negotiations is possible only if the tension around Ukraine is removed.
On the same day, the press secretary of the President of the Russian Federation Dmitry Peskov said that the specific dates for the negotiations would be announced later. As Peskov noted, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov will most likely represent the Russian diplomatic department.
At the same time, the press secretary of the White House Jen Psaki said that the United States is not ready to agree with some of the proposals of the Russian Federation on security guarantees. However, she confirmed that Russian leader Vladimir Putin would be present at the US-Russian security talks, but did not specify the exact date and place of the meeting.
On December 17, the Russian Foreign Ministry published draft agreements between Russia and the United States and NATO on security guarantees. As follows from the documents, in particular, the alliance should refuse to conduct any military activity on the territory of Ukraine and other states of Eastern Europe, Transcaucasia and Central Asia. According to a White House source, the US presidential administration found some of the proposals useful and others unacceptable.