Ukraine welcomes West, Russia efforts to ease tension
The Ukrainian Presidency says it welcomes the West and Moscow's efforts to reduce the level of tension regarding Kiev.
Ukraine said Tuesday it welcomes "efforts" by the West and Russia to ease tensions over Ukraine after a week of high-stakes diplomacy talks started in Geneva this week.
"We can only welcome the intent and efforts of the United States and Russia, and NATO and Russia to reduce tensions and resolve all mutual issues at the negotiating table," Ukrainian President's Spokesperson Sergiy Nykyforov expressed in a video statement sent to AFP.
Tensions around Ukraine have escalated in recent months, as Washington and Kiev's European allies claim Russia plans to invade Ukraine.
However, Russia has repeatedly denied the Western allegations of intending to invade its western neighbor, and Moscow's Foreign Intelligence Service accused the US State Department of spreading false information about Russia's alleged troop buildup.
Moscow has demanded security guarantees from Washington and its NATO allies and insists it had been promised that NATO would not expand to Ukraine and Georgia.
No decision behind Ukraine's back
After negotiations in Geneva on Monday, Russian and US officials offered to keep talking, but no breakthrough was achieved.
"We trust our partners and their statements that no decision on the fate of Ukraine will be taken behind our back," Nykyforov said in the statement.
Kiev is "interested in resolving the conflict" in the east of the country "as soon as possible" and "especially by peaceful means," he added.
Read more: Sherman: No talks on European security without European allies
No legal guarantees
Earlier, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said Russia had no say over whether Ukraine could join NATO.
"Russia has no voting right on the issue of Ukraine's NATO membership. This is a 'red line' that neither Ukraine nor our partners will cross," Kuleba told news site RBK Ukraine.
"The collective West will not agree to provide Russia with 'legal guarantees' on the alliance's eastward non-enlargement, as this would be its strategic defeat," the Minister added.