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Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba says preparations for the first phone call between Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and his U.S. counterpart Joe Biden are underway.
"Just yesterday I received the latest report from our embassy in Washington, D.C., on the latest contacts with representatives of the new administration and I see no reason for concern. In particular, they discussed the future contact between our presidents. Normal routine work and preparations for this conversation are underway," he said during an online briefing on Friday, an UNIAN correspondent reported.
"You may check on the White House's website and see what phone talks U.S. President Joe Biden has recently had. And you will see the number of his international contacts is almost zero now. Moreover, the White House has announced meetings are being transferred online due to quarantine," Kuleba said.
Read also Zelensky wants to involve Biden in Normandy format or create alternative According to the foreign minister, the U.S. president is now primarily focused on the domestic political agenda, since America, which Biden has inherited from the previous president, Donald Trump, is "in challenging conditions."
"Of course, we are working on organizing this conversation. There is no need to talk about some lack of communication between Ukraine and the United States. The proof is at least my recent conversation with U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken," Kuleba added.
Presidential phone call: What is known
- The date for the first phone talk between Zelensky and Biden has not yet been fixed.
- On February 1, 2021, Kuleba and newly-appointed U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken spoke over the phone and agreed to make bilateral partnership more ambitious.
- Blinken said, among other things, sanctions imposed on Russia for its aggression in Donbas and Crimea should remain in place until Moscow fully implements its commitments on the peaceful settlement of the conflict.
- Blinken also assured Kuleba of the new U.S. administration's readiness to maintain robust economic and military assistance to Ukraine, including the provision of lethal weapons.