‘A nuclear war cannot be started, nor can it be won’

Written by The Frontier Post

Alexander Akhtyrko

Security guarantees, the situation in Ukraine, possible sanctions and a break in relations – all these issues w-ere discussed by the presidents of the Russian Federation and the United States during a telephone conversation on Thursday. It lasted 50 minutes. All the details can be found in the article “GazetaRu”.
Late on Thursday, December 30, held a telephone conversation Russian President Vladimir Putin with the United States Joseph Biden leader. As the press service of the Kremlin informed, the main topic of the conversation was the implementation of the agreement reached during the videoconference on December 7 to launch negotiations on the provision of legal guarantees to ensure the security of Russia.
“Vladimir Putin gave detailed explanations of the fundamental approaches underlying the Russian draft treaty between the Russian Federation and the United States and Russia’s agreement with the member states of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. It was emphasized that the result of joint work should be firm legal guarantees excluding NATO ‘s eastward advance and the deployment of threatening weapons systems in the immediate vicinity of Russian borders. The attention that the security of each country can be achieved only on the basis of strict observance of the principle of the indivisibility of security “, – said in a statement. Mutual readiness for a serious and meaningful dialogue on the above issues was expressed, the press service of the Russian leader noted.
The parties confirmed that the talks will take place first in Geneva on January 9-10, and then within the framework of the Russia-NATO Council in Brussels on January 12. On January 13, discussions will begin in the OSCE. The presidents agreed to keep under personal control the course of discussions on the above-mentioned negotiation tracks, and especially in a bilateral format with an eye to the earliest possible achievement of concrete results. In this context, Joseph Biden emphasized the special responsibility of Russia and the United States for ensuring stability in Europe and the world as a whole, as well as the fact that Washington has no intentions to deploy offensive strike weapons on the territory of Ukraine.
The Russian side gave an exhaustive answer to the option, again mentioned by Joseph Biden, of adopting “large-scale” sanctions against Russia in the event of an escalation of the situation around Ukraine. In particular, it is said that this would be a grave mistake, in fact, threatening a complete rupture of Russian-American relations. “The presidents exchanged New Year’s greetings and best wishes. In general, the conversation was frank and businesslike and, of course, was useful to both parties. It was agreed to continue regular contacts at the highest level, ”the Kremlin said.
Inadmissibility of starting a nuclear war
Assistant to the head of the Russian state Yuri Ushakov added that Biden several times stressed the inadmissibility of starting a nuclear war. “It is very important that President Biden stressed several times during the conversation that a nuclear war cannot be started, nor can it be won. The Americans proceed from this, understanding that the United States and Russia have accumulated the largest nuclear potentials in the world, ”Ushakov said. Biden also stressed that Russia and the United States could and should play a key role in efforts to ensure peace and security both in Europe and elsewhere in the world, said the aide to the President of the Russian Federation. The American leader assured that Washington does not intend to deploy offensive strike weapons in Ukraine.
“Putin noted that this is one of the key points, which is just included in our documents, which we handed over to the Americans, on which we want to conduct further substantive negotiations,” Ushakov quoted TASS as saying. The issues of the bilateral agenda were not touched upon during the conversation. “You know, this conversation was entirely devoted to issues of security guarantees, specific issues of the bilateral agenda were not touched upon,” he stated. “Although the idea was emphasized that if the negotiations on security guarantees are successful, this will naturally lead to a certain normalization and, perhaps, even an improvement in bilateral relations in general.” Ushakov stressed that Biden “was well prepared and made very meaningful remarks.” According to him, the US president generally agreed with the position on security guarantees that Putin outlined to him.
“The main thing is that we need a result, and we will achieve results in the form of ensuring the guaranteed security of Russia.
The US President, in principle, agreed with this point of view and reacted quite logically and quite seriously, “said the assistant to the head of the Russian state. Putin told Biden about Russia’s position on the deployment of offensive weapons along its borders. “Our president emphasized that in this situation – rather complicated – we will behave the way the United States would behave if offensive weapons were deployed near American borders,” Ushakov said, noting that the Russian leader “made several calls ”To convey this key message to your colleague.
Is it possible to break up relations
Putin pointed to the possibility of a complete rupture of relations between the two countries if the promised “unprecedented sanctions” are introduced.
As Ushakov said, the US President mentioned that “if the escalation continues along the Ukrainian border, Western countries will take large-scale sanctions,” including in the economic and military spheres. “But our president immediately reacted to this by saying that if the West nevertheless decides to introduce the above-mentioned unprecedented sanctions under certain conditions, then all this could lead to a complete ru-pture of relations between our countries. And serious damage will be done to Russia’s relations with the West in general, ”added the aide to the Russian leader.
Subsequently, such steps will be regarded by descendants as a mistake, Putin said. “And many such mistakes have already been m-ade over the past 30 years, and therefore it is advisable not to make such mistakes in this situation,” the Kremlin spokesman said.
Large-scale sanctions
According to him, Biden did not specify exactly whi-ch actions of Moscow could lead to sanctions. “No, it was not specifically discussed,” Ushakov answered the question whether the US President explained what kind of “escalation” on the Russian-Ukrainian border, which could entail restrictions, he is talking about.
“Biden mentioned the so-called large-scale sanctions, which many are already talking about in the West. This topic was also discussed in the previous conversation between the presidents of the Russian Federation and the United States on December 7, and to this our president gave a clear answer that it would be a major mistake, which, of course, could lead to a complete rupture of relations, “said the assistant to the head of the Russian state, noting that “this is a very serious matter.”
At the same time, the aforementioned severance of ties with the West, according to him, “does not imply anything” at the moment. “Because we do not know what“ large-scale sanctions ”are, but we know that it will be a colossal mistake, which can lead to the most serious consequences,” Ushakov added.
“We hope that this will not happen; for this purpose, we, the Americans and other Western countries are starting the negotiation process on three tracks. For this we are working and for this our presidents have reached agreements, which we are, in general, happy with and with what are satisfied, ”he said. Biden did not identify specific points that do not suit the United States in the RF proposals on security guarantees. “No, no specific points have been identified. But, as I have already mentioned, the Americans said that the movement of Russian troops along the Ukrainian border was unacceptable for them, they put an emphasis on this, ”Ushakov informed. The conversation between the presidents of Russia and the United States lasted 50 minutes. “The dialogue will continue. In addition, the presidents will push for negotiations that will be conducted by our respective interdepartmental tea-ms in Geneva, ”the Krem-lin spokesman concluded.
What was reported in the White House
Biden called on Russia to reduce tensions with Ukraine, follows from a press release from the White House. “He made it clear that the United States and its allies and partners will respond decisively if Russia continues to invade Ukraine. President Biden also expressed support for diplomacy, starting with bilateral dialogue on strategic stability, in NATO through the NATO-Russia Council and in the Orga-nization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. President Biden reaffirmed that significant progress in these dialogues can occur only in an atmosphere of de-escalation, not escalation,” the statement says. “Biden outlined two paths, two aspects of the US approach, which will indeed depend on Russia’s actions in the period ahead. One is a diplomatic path leading to a de-escalation of the situation, and the other is a path that is more focused on deterrence, including serious costs and consequences if Russia decides to continue its invasion of Ukraine. And these costs include economic costs, adjustments and an increase in the number of NATO forces in allied countries, as well as additional assistance to Ukraine, allowing it to continue to defend itself and its territory, ” added a senior US administration official.
The previous negotiations between the leaders of the two countries took place on December 7 in the format of a video summit. An important event for Russian-American relations is considered by 40% of Russians, unimportant – 14%, follows from a poll by the Public Opinion Foun-dation. People most often called the most important topics of the negotiations “the agreement on Ukra-ine”, “the extension of NA-TO to our borders” and “the preservation of peace”. 21-% of respondents hope that relations between Russia and the United States will improve after negotiations. According to 4%, relations between the countries will worsen, 55% do not expect any changes. In the view of 6% of respondents, Ameri-can sanctions against Russ-ia will weaken, 28% belie-ve that they will be streng-thened, 40% – that there will be no changes here.

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