Ukraine Welcomes Biden-Putin Call as Path to Deterrence and De-escalation

KYIV, Ukraine (Reuters) -
Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba. (REUTERS/Ints Kalnins)

Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba told Reuters on Wednesday that talks between U.S. President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin had enabled “deterrence and de-escalation.”

In the first reaction by a senior Ukrainian official about Tuesday’s video call between Biden and Putin, Kuleba welcomed U.S. efforts to bring Russia to the negotiating table.

But he added that the priority was drawing up a deterrence package to ward Moscow off any further military escalation.

“The contact itself serves [as] deterrence and de-escalation,” Kuleba said in written remarks about Tuesday’s call. “We appreciate the crucial diplomatic engagement of the U.S. in efforts to bring Russia back to the table of negotiations.”

Biden warned Putin on Tuesday that the West would impose “strong economic and other measures” on Russia if Russia launched a new offensive against Ukraine, while Putin demanded guarantees that NATO would not expand farther eastward.