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White House: Biden Told Zelensky US, Allies Will 'Respond Decisively' if Russia 'Invades' Ukraine

© REUTERS / LEAH MILLISU.S. President Joe Biden is seen in the Oval Office as he speaks by phone
U.S. President Joe Biden is seen in the Oval Office as he speaks by phone - Sputnik International, 1920, 02.01.2022
On Sunday, United States President Joe Biden spoke with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to detail that the US and its allies would "respond decisively if Russia further invades Ukraine."
A statement released by White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki regarding the Sunday conversation further indicated that the two leaders favor a diplomatic solution and aim to start with next week's bilateral Strategic Stability Dialogue through the NATO-Russia Council and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.
Biden also used the opportunity to underscore the commitment of the US and its allies to the principle of "nothing about you without you" to Zelenskyy.
Biden also reaffirmed the US pledge to support Ukraine sovereignty and territorial integrity. "He also expressed support for confidence-building measures to de-escalate tensions in Donbas and active diplomacy to advance the implementation of the Minsk Agreements, in support of the Normandy Format," Psaki said.
Shortly after the White House statement was issued, Zelensky tweeted that his conversation with Biden proves the "special nature of our relations."

"Joint actions of Ukraine, US and partners in keeping peace in Europe, preventing further escalation, reforms, deoligarchization were discussed. We appreciate the unwavering support of Ukraine," Zelenskyy tweeted.

Biden spoke with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Thursday to discuss rising regional tensions and fears of an armed conflict breaking out over Ukraine and European security. Biden earlier asserted that he had warned Russia against any "aggressive" moves against its neighbor, warning that any perceived advances would result in "severe sanctions."
Putin has repeatedly rejected claims that Russia intends to invade Ukraine, after Western reports cited tens of thousands of Russian troops grouping at the Ukraine-Russia border. At his annual end-of-year conference, Putin accused the US and allies of intentionally ratcheting up tension and recalled NATO's constant footprint along Russian borders, which has long seen as a threat to its national security.
The Russian president also underscored that Moscow maintains the right to move forces around within the federation as it sees fit.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky - Sputnik International, 1920, 01.01.2022
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US and Russian diplomats are set to meet on January 10 to discuss security concerns and begin a dialogue of deescalation. This scheduled meeting comes after the Russian Foreign Ministry drafted a security agreement in December 2021 for consideration by the US and NATO.
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