PARIS, December 7. / TASS /. The leaders of the UK, the US, France and Germany have discussed the relations between Russia and Ukraine, supporting the resumption of the talks in the Normandy format, the Elysee Palace stated on Tuesday.
"On Monday, December 6, the French President [Emmanuel Macron] held talks with the heads of state and government of the [NATO] Quint format (France, Germany, Italy, the UK and the US), <...> the sides addressed tensions between Russia and Ukraine, expressed their determination to respect the Ukrainian sovereignty and the commitment to work for the sake of peace and security in Europe. All the sides reiterated the need to resume negotiations between Russia and Ukraine as part of the Normandy Format under the auspices of France and Germany," according to the communique.
The situation around Ukraine
Previously, the West and Ukraine frequently echoed an allegedly looming Russian invasion of Ukraine. Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov castigated these statements as an empty and groundless escalation of tension, emphasizing that Russia posed no threat to anyone. At the same time, the Kremlin press secretary did not exclude some possible provocations to justify such claims and warned that the attempts to resolve the Ukrainian conflict by force would carry extremely serious consequences.
The negotiations between Putin and Biden will take place on December 7 via video linkup. The Russian president will be in Sochi. Earlier, Peskov noted that the presidents would address the Ukrainian conflict, the advancement of NATO to the Russian borders and Putin’s initiative on security guarantees.
Earlier, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov mentioned that Russia was ready to resume mediation efforts as part of the Normandy format to settle the Ukrainian conflict. At the same time, the top diplomat emphasized that a possible ministerial meeting "should be well prepared," in particular, a detailed joint statement, which included concrete recommendations to Ukraine and Donbass as parties to the conflict, should be developed.
Russia has repeatedly expressed its commitment to the 2015 Minsk accords, considering them to be the only basis for resolving the Donbass conflict.