The recent words of US President Joe Biden that Russia’s decision to potentially attack Ukraine “belongs solely to Putin” sparked outrage in Kyiv. As experts emphasise, these words may be perceived by the Kremlin as consent to an escalation of tensions between the two countries.
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During a nearly two-hour press conference in the White House, Joe Biden warned Russia against invading Ukraine, while at the same time admitting the lack of unanimity within NATO as to how certain member states would react to potential moves by Moscow.
The US President also assessed that Russia would eventually make a move on Ukraine, saying the country would pay dearly for a full-scale invasion but suggesting there could be a lower cost for a “minor incursion.”
When asked about this assessment and his thoughts behind it, he answered that the Kremlin’s decision to potentially attack Ukraine “belongs solely to Vladimir Putin.”
REPORTER: "Have you determined whether President Putin plans to invade or move into Ukraine as you said?"— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) January 19, 2022
BIDEN: "...That decision is totally, solely, completely, a Putin decision." pic.twitter.com/qtLSh0yjgc