Bloomberg Agency reported that an “acute” verbal altercation occurred between US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken and Russian Sergei Lavrov over Ukraine during a dinner in the presence of dozens of their colleagues this week.
According to Bloomberg, “this verbal tension emerged as the United States and its European allies seek ways, including through possible sanctions, to counter the threat of a Russian invasion of Ukraine after President Vladimir Putin amassed his forces on the neighboring country’s border.”
The agency quoted two people familiar with the matter as saying that Lavrov spoke at a dinner hosted by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe in Stockholm on December 1, to renew the Russian view that the collapse of power in Ukraine in 2014 was a coup, and he also said that NATO and the European Union “. They suppress dissent and threaten Russia.”
Blinken responded by summarizing the Western version of the events of 2014, including allegations that “forces loyal to then-President Viktor Yanukovych shot peaceful protesters in Kiev”, killing more than 100 people. Blinken also told his Russian counterpart that NATO was a “defensive alliance.”
Moscow denies its intention to attack Ukraine, accusing Kiev, in turn, of massing its forces on the border.
Earlier, Lavrov accused the West of pushing Kiev to take hostile steps against Russia, noting that NATO’s activity was fueling the situation near Russias western borders.
During their meeting in Stockholm on Thursday, Lavrov Blinken warned that bringing Ukraine into the US geopolitical game would have dire consequences.