Biden Tells Putin: Ukraine Invasion Will Be Fatal To Russia
President Joe Biden told Russia’s Vladimir Putin that invading Ukraine would cause “widespread human suffering” and that the West was committed to diplomacy to end the crisis but “equally prepared for other scenarios,” the White House said Saturday (Sunday, Feb. 13, 2022, in Manila), Jim Heintz and Aamer Madhani reported for the Associated Press (AP).
Photo Insert: President Biden said the West was committed to diplomacy to end the crisis but “equally prepared for other scenarios.”
The New York Times also reported Biden warned Putin in a call that an invasion would result in “swift and severe” costs to Russia.
The call came amid heightened tensions, and just hours after the State Department ordered all but a “core team” of its diplomats and employees to leave the American Embassy in Kyiv over fears that Moscow would soon mount a major assault.
Neither side said there had been any breakthroughs. A senior Biden administration official said the call was professional and substantive, but that there was no fundamental change, Trevor Hunnicutt and Dmitry Antonov reported for Reuters.
The Kremlin said Putin told Biden Washington has failed to take Russia's main concerns into account, and it had received no "substantial answer" on key elements including NATO's expansion and the deployment of offensive forces to Ukraine.
The senior Biden administration official said it was unclear whether Putin was committed to diplomacy even as he agreed to stay in touch with Biden.