WASHINGTON: Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken spoke by phone yesterday with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell, and the OSCE Chair, represented by Polish Defense Minister Mariusz Błaszczak.
Secretary Blinken and his counterparts discussed the unprovoked and destabilizing buildup of Russian forces near Ukraine’s border and the need to de-escalate tensions. The Secretary emphasized the importance of diplomatic engagement, including in the U.S.-Russia Strategic Security Dialogue, the NATO-Russia Council, and the OSCE.
He welcomed Poland’s proposal as OSCE Chair for a revitalized security dialogue at OSCE, where 57 nations, including Russia and Ukraine, as well as the members of NATO and the EU and other nations, are represented. The Secretary said he would continue to urge Russia to choose the path of diplomacy and de-escalation and make clear that any further Russian attack on Ukraine would come at a high cost to Moscow.