Sat. May 28th, 2022

Weke to Moscow delivered its security demands to the United States and NATO, the Western powers handed over their highly anticipated responses, which placed the onus on Russia to act next on the Ukraine crisis.

In December, following the build-up of troops at the Ukrainian border, Russia called on NATO to withdraw its forces and weapons from Eastern Europe and permanently block Ukraine, a former Soviet state, from becoming a member. to become.

But in a written response to those demands, delivered in person by the U.S. ambassador to Moscow on Wednesday, Washington reiterated its commitment to upholding NATO’s “open door” policies.

In short, NATOled by the United States, said it provided its answers “in parallel with the United States.”

While Russia’s attempt to curb the trans-Atlantic security alliance has apparently been rejected, Washington says it wants to continue to pursue a diplomatic path to address Moscow’s concerns and discuss issues such as arms control and confidence – building measures with the Kremlin.

Here are all the latest updates:

Close Putin ally calls for diplomacy

Russia and the United States must engage in diplomacy to resolve the gap, former President Dmitry Medvedev said, warning against tensions over political points.

“It is clear here that the most important and single route is actually to reach an agreement on security guarantees, (through) political-diplomatic means, negotiations, the use of the principle of the indivisibility of security …” says Medvedev, now deputy -chairman. of Russia’s Security Council, according to Russia’s RIA Novosti news agency.

A close ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, he said the idea of ​​a Moscow-Washington conflict over Ukraine would be a “catastrophic scenario” and sounded the alarm that “hot heads” in the US and NATO were even so. consider a scenario.

“I reckon it will never happen,” he added.

Ruble recovery from almost 15-month low

The ruble reduced early losses to strengthen, away from the nearly 15-month low hit against the dollar in the previous session, as rising tensions over Ukraine continued to shake Russian markets.

Russia’s currency fell to its lowest level since early November 2020 on Wednesday before making a partial return, as the US said it had set out a diplomatic route to address Russia’s comprehensive security demands.

At 07:36 GMT, the ruble was 0.5 percent stronger against the dollar at 79.06. It dipped to 80.4125 in the previous session. Against the euro, the ruble rose 0.8 percent to trade at 88.65.

China urges ‘calmness’ of all parties

China’s foreign minister, Wang Yi, told US Antony Blinken that Beijing wanted to see all parties involved remain calm.

“We call on all parties to remain calm and refrain from doing things that are causing tensions and lifting the crisis,” Wang told the U.S. Secretary of State late Wednesday, China’s foreign ministry said in a statement. said a statement.

Wang, in an apparent reference to Russia’s objections to NATO enlargement, told Blinken that regional security could not be guaranteed by strengthening or even expanding military blocs.

Ceasefire violations increase in eastern Ukraine

Ceasefire Violations is escalating in eastern Ukraine ruled by rebels, where Kiev has been fighting Russian-backed separatists since early 2014.

The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) on Wednesday recorded 403 offenses, including 26 explosions, in the Donetsk region. That was more than 39 ceasefire violations on Tuesday and more than double the average figure for the previous seven days.

Meanwhile, in Luhansk, the OSCE monitoring mission recorded 57 ceasefire violations, including seven explosions. It recorded 163 ceasefire violations in the region on Tuesday, an increase on the average figure for January.

A Russian soldier attends a military exercise at the Golovenki training ground in MoscowRussia has denied any plans to invade Ukraine, but Kiev and its Western allies fear Moscow is ready to launch an attack. [Russian Defence Ministry Press Service via AP]

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