NATO has announced Tuesday that its 30 member nations will hold a virtual meeting this week to assess the situation in Ukraine and progress in negotiations with Russia.
In an extraordinary meeting on Friday, the alliance’s members will commence a week of intense diplomacy aimed at easing tensions between the former Cold War foes and a buildup on Ukraine’s borders.
Earlier this month, Joe Biden warned Russian president Vladimir Putin that if Moscow pursues further military action against Ukraine, Washington may impose new sanctions. As a result, Putin said, a move such as that made by the U.S. could lead to a complete breakdown of relations between the two countries.
As concerns over Russia’s troop buildup near Ukraine have grown, the two leaders shared a candid conversation for nearly an hour last week. That crisis has worsened as the Kremlin has increased its assertiveness over border security and fired hypersonic missiles to underscore its demands.
Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. President Joe Biden spoke twice this month prior to the U.S.-Russian talks scheduled for Geneva on Jan. 9 and 10. After those discussions, the Russia-NATO Council will be met on January 12 and negotiations will occur at the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe meeting in Vienna on January 13.