Russian diplomat doesn’t rule out deployments in Cuba and Venezuela

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From left to proper, US Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Grushko, and Russian Deputy Defense Minister Alexander Fomin pose for an ofot earlier than the assembly between Russia and NATO at NATO headquarters in Brussels, on Wednesday, January 12, 2022. (Olivier Hoslet, Pool Photo by way of AP)

AP

Russia on Thursday raised the stakes in its confrontation with the West over the Ukraine concern, after a distinguished Kremlin diplomat warned {that a} Russian navy deployment in Cuba and Venezuela can’t be dominated out if tensions with the United States rise.

Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov, who led the Russian delegation in Monday’s negotiations in Geneva, mentioned in televised remarks on Thursday that he might neither affirm nor exclude the potential for Russia establishing a navy infrastructure in Cuba and Venezuela. Talks in Geneva and Wednesday’s assembly between Russia and NATO in Vienna failed to cut back discrepancies over Russian safety calls for, as Russia maintains troops mobilized close to Ukraine.

In an interview with Russian tv RTVI, Ryabkov reported that “it all depends on the actions of our American counterparts,” including that President Vladimir Putin has warned that Russia might take military-technical measures if the United States acts to impress Russia and lift navy stress.

Ryabkov mentioned the United States and NATO have rejected Moscow’s essential declare: a assure that the alliance is not going to incorporate Ukraine and different former Soviet nations. He added that the good variations within the methods of the 2 sides solid doubt on the continuity of the negotiations.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov reported “some positive elements and nuances” through the talks, though he famous that the talks “failed” resulting from sharp disagreements on key Moscow calls for.

“The conversations were started to receive specific responses to specific major issues that were raised and disagreements remained on those major issues, which is bad,” he mentioned in a teleconference with reporters.

Peskov warned of a whole breakdown of US-Russian relations if the proposed sanctions towards President Putin and different high civilian and navy leaders are adopted. The measures, proposed by US Senate Democrats, would additionally goal Russia’s main monetary establishments if Moscow sends troops to Ukraine.

Peskov criticized the proposals as an try to extend stress on Moscow through the talks, saying it will not work.

“These are sanctions, which taking into account the inevitable adequate response, effectively amount to an initiative to break relations,” he warned. He added that Russia will reply in sort to guard its pursuits.

The talks come as an estimated 100,000 combat-ready Russian troopers, tanks and heavy navy tools are gathering close to Ukraine’s jap border. The buildup has induced deep considerations in Kiev and the West that Moscow is making ready for an invasion. Russia denies that it’s contemplating an invasion and, in flip, accuses the West of threatening its safety by putting navy personnel and tools in Central and Eastern Europe.

In 2014, Russia annexed Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula and supported a separatist insurgency within the east of the nation, the place greater than seven years of combating has killed greater than 14,000 individuals.

A 2015 peace accord brokered by France and Germany helped finish large-scale battles, however frequent skirmishes continued and efforts to barter a political settlement failed.

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Associated Press journalist Emily Schultheis in Vienna contributed to this report.

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