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Blinken and Lavrov meet on the sidelines of the G-20 in the first meeting of senior diplomats since the start of the war in Ukraine


NEW DELHI – US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov briefly chatted on the sidelines of a Group of 20 meeting in India on Thursday, the first meeting between top diplomats since the invasion of India. Ukraine by Russia.

Their meeting involved less than 10 minutes of discussion, a senior State Department official said in a phone call with reporters.

Blinken urged Russia to reverse Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decision to suspend New START, a key nuclear arms control treaty between the world’s two largest nuclear powers. Blinken noted that the treaty is in the interest of both countries as well as international security and that the world expects nations to behave responsibly when it comes to nuclear security.

Blinken also reiterated the need for the Kremlin to release detained US citizen Paul Whelan. He noted that the United States had put a proposal on the table and said they should accept it.

Additionally, Blinken highlighted the United States’ continued support for Ukraine, including its proposals for a just and lasting peace that respects the United Nations Charter and Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, said the manager. Blinken pointed out that Ukraine and the United States want Russia’s war to end on this basis, but a similar resolve from Moscow continues to be lacking.

Blinken clarified that decisions regarding Ukraine are left to Kyiv and stressed that he and his team are committed to conveying and defending US interests through the appropriate channels, which must remain open.

Maria Zakharova, spokeswoman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, told the official RIA Novosti news agency that Blinken had asked to contact Lavrov, and they spoke “on the move” during the second session of the G- 20, but there were no negotiations.

Blinken and Lavrov last met in person in January of last year in Geneva. Their last phone call was in July last year when they discussed the proposed release of Whelan and WNBA star Brittney Griner.

Abigail Williams reported from New Delhi. Summer Concepcion reported from New York.

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