International

Biden prepared to meet Putin to end Russia-Ukraine war

If there is interest in Russian President Vladimir Putin determining that he wants to find a solution to stop the war, US President Joe Biden has stated that he would be willing to meet with him.

He highlighted to reporters that Mr. Putin had not yet done that while speaking with French President Emmanuel Macron.

The two men emphasized that they will keep opposing Russia’s war.

The French president made it plain that his country would never press Ukraine to accept a solution it found objectionable.

They were speaking as a top Ukrainian official reported that since the commencement of Russia’s invasion on February 24th, between 10,000 and 13,000 of its soldiers had died.

The casualty tolls are rarely disclosed by either Russia or Ukraine, and the Ukrainian military has not backed up Mykhailo Podolyak’s claims.

The most senior US general, Mark Milley, stated last month that since the start of the war, roughly 100,000 Russian and 100,000 Ukrainian soldiers have been killed or wounded.

Mr. Podolyak claimed in an interview with Ukrainian television station Channel 24 that Kyiv was “openly bragging about the number of people dead.”

He continued by saying that “substantial” numbers of civilians may have been killed. Additionally, he said that since the invasion, up to 100,000 Russian soldiers had perished.

Ursula von der Leyen, the leader of the EU Commission, said that 100,000 Ukrainian soldiers had died in a video speech on Wednesday.

A representative for the EU Commission later stated that this was an error and that the number included both the dead and the injured. Additionally, Ms. von der Leyen mentioned the 20,000 civilian fatalities in Ukraine.

The US and French presidents promised “continued support for Ukraine’s defense of its sovereignty and territorial integrity” in a joint statement following their talks at the White House. They also committed to speeding up the delivery of air defense systems and announcing plans for an international conference on Ukraine to be held in Paris on December 13th.

President Biden’s declaration that he was willing to speak with the Russian president was accompanied with a strong qualification, and his French counterpart said that they would never press the Ukrainians to reach a deal that they would not find acceptable.

After Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov protested that no meaningful offers of mediation had been made by European nations up to that point, President Macron spoke a few hours later. Adding that Russia had not received any signals through diplomatic channels, he was cited as saying, “Macron, by the way, has been routinely claiming for the previous two weeks that he was preparing a conversation with the Russian president.”

Former US Secretary of State John Kerry was mentioned by Mr. Lavrov as the type of person who had in the past been able to resolve issues and participate in genuine discussion.

 

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