Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has been urged to “stop the war of aggression” on Ukraine by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken. Since the beginning of the war a year ago, Mr Blinken has not directly addressed Sergei Lavrov with any comments.
According to Mr Blinken, the two had a brief encounter outside of the G20 meeting in Mumbai. He brought up Paul Whelan’s case as well, an American who is being held in Russia.
During a brief conversation on the sidelines of the meeting, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken encouraged Moscow to change its mind about the New START nuclear pact, according to a senior US source. Blinken was joined by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.
According to the official, Blinken also informed Lavrov that America was ready to assist Ukraine in self-defence for however long it takes.
It’s thought that this was the two people’s first face-to-face meeting before Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022, and the chat lasted less than 10 minutes.
The US representative remarked that “We always remain hopeful that the Russians will reverse their decision and be prepared to engage in a diplomatic process that can lead to a just and durable peace, but I wouldn’t say that coming out of this encounter there was any expectation that things will change in the near term.”
Blinken wanted to “disabuse the Russians of any notion that our support (for Ukraine) might be wavering or the support from our allies and partners might be wavering”.
Earlier during the Delhi meeting, Mr Lavrov and Mr Blinken both made statements regarding the conflict in Ukraine.
On Thursday, Mr Lavrov charged that the West was attempting to persuade neutral nations to oppose Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
“The West continues its attempts to push everyone and everything,” he remarked.
According to reports, Mr Blinken met with senior diplomats during the meeting in Delhi to advocate for Ukraine. On Thursday morning, Mr Blinken reiterated his opposition to the war in a private group meeting.