On December 2, U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met in Stockholm, amid growing concerns among Western powers that Russia is seeking to invade Ukraine.
Lavrov and Blinken would report details of their meeting to Vladimir Putin and Joe Biden, said Blinken. The two Presidents “may have an opportunity to speak directly in the near future.”
According to U.S. officials, the agenda of a meeting between Biden and Putin have not been finalized but it will be soon as Russian troops accumulate on the border with Ukraine. Last week, Biden told reporters that direct communication with Putin was the best way to avoid conflict between the two countries.
A senior U.S. State Department official told reporters that Blinken and Lavrov met on the sidelines of the OSCE summit. He described their meeting as professional, adding that it resulted in an agreement to continue diplomatic talks and that the U.S. was able to make clear its concerns about Russia's military build-up.
Earlier on December 2, Blinken also held a bilateral meeting with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba, where he reiterated Washington's “unwavering commitment to Ukraine's territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence.”