US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has called on Russia to take a "diplomatic and peaceful path" as an estimated 100,000 Russian troops have been deployed near Ukraine's borders, BBC reports.
Blinken in Kyiv urges Russia to take peaceful path
STEPANAKERT, JANUARY 20, ARTSAKHPRESS: Blinken, who is visiting Kyiv, said Russia could launch an attack at very short notice. Russia has repeatedly denied planning to invade the country.
Ahead of his visit to Kyiv, senior state department officials indicated that Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov may be offered the option of a "diplomatic off-ramp" in Geneva. The White House said no option was off the table.
"I strongly, strongly hope that we can keep this on a diplomatic and peaceful path, but ultimately, that's going to be President Putin's decision," Mr Blinken told reporters in Kyiv.
On Wednesday, Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said the US could not force Moscow to move its troops away from the Ukrainian border. "They are on our territory and we won't be making any changes to their movement because of external pressure," he said.
Instead, he urged Washington to stop its military support for Ukraine, which he said posed a direct threat to Russian security.