Biden: Ukraine invasion would bring decisive response
Shafaq News / U.S. President Joe Biden told Russia's Vladimir Putin on Saturday that the West would respond decisively to any invasion of Ukraine, adding such a step would produce widespread suffering and isolate Moscow.
In the latest effort to manage growing hostility, the two men spoke by phone for an hour a day after Washington and its allies warned that the Russian military, which has 100,000 troops massed near Ukraine, could invade at any moment. Moscow has dismissed those warnings as "hysteria."
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.
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.
The call took place as Israel, Portugal and Belgium joined the list of countries that have urged their citizens to leave Ukraine immediately.
The U.S. State Department ordered most of its embassy staff to leave Ukraine. The Pentagon said it was withdrawing about 150 military trainers.