US President Joe Biden met with his national security team, including National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan and Counselor Steve Ricchetti on Saturday (January 22) at the Camp David presidential retreat to discuss “continued Russian aggressive actions toward Ukraine”, the White House said.
“President Biden was briefed on the current state of Russian military operations on Ukraine’s borders and discussed both our ongoing efforts to de-escalate the situation with diplomacy and our range of deterrence measures that are being coordinated closely with our Allies and partners, including ongoing deliveries of security assistance to Ukraine. President Biden again affirmed that should Russia further invade Ukraine, the United States will impose swift and severe consequences on Russia with our Allies and partners,” the White House added.
According to the White House, other security officials joined via secure video.
The meeting comes as Britain on Saturday accused the Kremlin of seeking to install a pro-Russian leader in Ukraine and said Russian intelligence officers had been in contact with several former Ukrainian politicians as part of plans for an invasion.
The British foreign ministry declined to provide evidence to back its accusations, which came at a time of high tensions between Russia and the West over Russia’s massing of troops near its border with Ukraine. Moscow has insisted it has no plans to invade.
The British claims come a day after the top U.S. and Russian diplomats failed to make a major breakthrough in talks to resolve the crisis over Ukraine, although they agreed to keep talking. Russia has made security demands on the United States, including a halt to NATO’s eastward expansion and a pledge that Ukraine will never be allowed to join the Western military alliance.
The first shipment of the United States’ $200 million security support package for Ukraine arrived in Kyiv, the U.S. Embassy said on Saturday.
Washington approved the $200 million package in December.