Tensions in Ukraine: Joe Biden offers to meet with Vladimir Putin as long as Russia does not invade.

President Joe Biden of the United States has agreed “in principle” to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin in order to prevent him from launching an invasion of Ukraine.

According to the White House, the negotiations proposed by French President Emmanuel Macron will only take place if Russia does not invade its neighbor.

The crisis between Ukraine and its wealthier, stronger neighbor Russia has yet to be resolved diplomatically, and it could become one of Europe’s biggest security crises since World War II.

Biden’s visit with Russian President Vladimir Putin comes as US officials claimed intelligence indicated Russia is preparing to start a military campaign after gathering over 190,000 troops on its southern, northern, and eastern borders with Ukraine.

Ukraine tensions: Joe Biden agrees to hold summit with Vladimir Putin as far as Russia doesn

Satellite imagery showing Russian troop deployment

After two nearly three-hour phone talks between Emmanuel Macron and Vladimir Putin, the French President revealed the idea.

The phone conversations took place early Monday morning, following a 15-minute talk between Macron and Biden.

Details of the planned summit will be discussed, according to Macron’s office, during a meeting between US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Thursday.

The White House stated in a statement that Russia appeared to be “continuing preparations for a full-scale assault on Ukraine very soon,” and that the US was prepared to impose “swift and severe repercussions” if that happened.

According to the French president, Putin agreed on the need to “prioritize a diplomatic solution” to the problem. It stated “intensive work” would be done in the “coming few hours” to enable a meeting aimed at a ceasefire.

According to the Kremlin, Putin accused the Ukrainian military for the increase of hostilities, which Ukraine denies, claiming that Moscow is waging a provocation campaign against Ukrainian forces in order to create a pretext for intervention.

Macron, however, stated that both leaders agreed to resume negotiations through the Normandy Format, a group comprised of Russia, Ukraine, France, and Germany that was formed to settle the situation in eastern Ukraine.

Russia said on Sunday that military drills in Belarus, where 30,000 Russian troops are stationed, will be extended past Sunday. One reason for the exercises’ extension, according to a Belarusian statement, is the “deterioration of the situation” in eastern Ukraine.

Secretary Blinken told CNN that “everything we’re seeing signals this is dead serious” and that “we’re on the verge of an invasion.”

“We will utilize every opportunity and minute we have until the tanks are rolling and the jets are flying to see if diplomacy can still discourage President Putin from pushing this ahead,” he continued.

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