Negotiations between the US and Russia begin in Geneva (US source)

Negotiations between Russia and the United States opened on Monday in Geneva, said a spokesman for the US State Department, amid fears that Russian forces would invade Ukraine.

The US Undersecretary of State, Wendy Sherman, and the Russian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sergei Riabkov began the meeting at 08:55 (07:55 GMT) in the US representation in the Swiss city, according to that source.

The Russian delegation had arrived shortly after 08:30 (07:30 GMT) by car, following the American delegation, under close police surveillance.

Located in the international district of Geneva, the United States representation is located a few hundred meters from the Russian one, near the UN headquarters.

The high-level meeting marks the start of a week-long diplomatic marathon, during which Russia will meet with NATO and also with the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).

The United States and Russia laid out clear guidelines before the dialogue on Ukraine. Washington warned of the risk of a confrontation while Russia ruled out making concessions.

Tensions have risen since Russia began stationing tens of thousands of troops on the border with Ukraine, in exchange for guarantees that NATO will not continue to expand towards its borders.

For Moscow, one of the key issues is that Ukraine never enters the Atlantic military pact, which Kiev wants to access.

In June, Russian President Vladimir Putin met with US President Joe Biden in Geneva and they agreed to establish a regular dialogue led by Sherman and Riabkov.

This Monday is the third meeting between the two leaders since then.

apo / vog / lch / mar / zm

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