Biden does not want to talk to his Russian counterpart about a possible diplomatic solution to the conflict without Kiev’s permission.
The US and Russia are exchanging prisoners but diplomacy remains deadlocked and there is little hope for diplomatic channels between Washington and Moscow over the Ukraine war.
The United States and Russia demonstrated once again that they can talk by completing their second prisoner exchange this year.
Following the exchange of American basketball player Brittany Griner for Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout.
US and Russian officials met in Istanbul on Friday.
They discussed a “limited set of bilateral issues”, but the conflict between Moscow and Kiev was not among them.
Griner was arrested in Russia in February in a scene reminiscent of the Cold War.
On minor drug charges, she walked down the runway at Abu Dhabi airport on Thursday toward a plane that was supposed to take her back to the United States.
On the opposite side was Bout, a Russian arms dealer who was sentenced in 2008 to 25 years in prison in the United States after being captured in Thailand.
who declared in his triumphant return that the West wanted to “destroy” his country.
Still imprisoned in Russia is Paul Whelan, a former US Marine convicted of espionage.
something that the Republican opposition uses to criticize the exchange of talks by Democratic President Joe Biden’s administration, which it claims is working for his release.
Read also: Biden calls for the release of political prisoners in Cuba
America and Russia
Russian President Vladimir Putin seemed open to the possibility of more prisoner exchanges with the United States.
Which fueled speculation as to which Russians he wanted to release.
“In this matter we have reached an agreement and we do not rule out continuing this work in the future,” Putin said on Friday on the sidelines of a summit in Kyrgyzstan.
On the conflict in Ukraine invaded by Russia, which led to the withdrawal of part of the Russian troops, Putin declared: “After all, an agreement has to be reached in the end.”
relationship in an “abusive” situation
However, direct talks with Moscow on Ukraine are not on Washington’s agenda.
Biden doesn’t want to talk about a possible diplomatic solution to the conflict without moving on from Kiev to his Russian counterpart, who momentarily refuses to hear about it, under bombardment.
But Washington is not shying away from talking to Moscow on other specific issues.
Thursday’s prisoner exchange was the second since the start of the war in Ukraine.
Trevor Reed, a former Marine who was sentenced to nine years in prison for violence in Russia, was traded to Istanbul in April for Russian pilot Konstantin Yaroshenko.
Will Pomeranz, director of the Kennan Institute at the Washington-based think tank Wilson Center, said the talks have no goal other than freeing American citizens.
“I don’t think it will have the slightest impact on relations between Russia and the United States,” he said.
“They are in a completely pathetic state and I don’t think this is going to change the dynamics.”