White House Watch

National Security Adviser Casts Doubt On Biden-Putin Meeting Actually Happening


National security adviser Jake Sullivan cast doubt on a meeting between President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin actually taking place as the U.S. maintains its belief Moscow is on the cusp of invading Ukraine.

“So, when President Macron asked President Biden yesterday if he was prepared in principle to meet with President Putin, if Russia did not invade, of course, President Biden said yes,” Sullivan told NBC’s “Today” on Monday.

“But every indication we see on the ground right now, in terms of the disposition of Russian forces, is that they are, in fact, getting prepared for a major attack on Ukraine,” Sullivan said.

French President Emmanuel Macron attempted to broker the meeting between Biden and Putin amid fears of an invasion was imminent, The Washington Post reported. Both leaders “accepted the principle of such a summit,” to be succeeded by a broader meeting that would include “relevant stakeholders to discuss security and strategic stability in Europe,” according to Macron’s office

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Monday that while it was “feasible” a meeting concerning Ukraine would take place, “it’s premature to talk about specific plans for a summit,” the Post reported.

The U.S. said that if Russia invades Ukraine before the meeting, it will not take place, the Post reported. Biden said on Friday he believes Putin has already made up his mind to invade, and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield warned on Thursday that Russia was “moving toward an imminent invasion.”

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