December 8. TASS reported US President Joe Biden told Russian President Vladimir Putin that he will discuss NATO’s eastward expansion with his Alliance colleagues in response to Putin concerns, Presidential Aide Yuri Ushakov said in the wake of the Putin-Biden talks Tuesday.
"[Biden] said that he will discuss all concerns expressed by the Russian side among his allies," Ushakov said.
He reiterated that the two presidents tasked their representatives with looking into this sensitive issue in the very near future.
When asked whether Russia planned to withdraw its troops from the border with Ukraine, Ushakov asked rhetorically: "Where exactly are we supposed to pull back our troops, which are already on the Russian territory?" "Russian troops are on their own territory and are not threatening anyone, and this is what the Russian president has said," he added.
Ushakov quoted the Russian president as saying in the conversation with Biden that "you, Americans, are worried by our battalions stationed on the Russian territory, thousands of kilometers away from the US, while we are really concerned about our own security, about Russia’s security in the global sense, on the global level."
"This is roughly what Putin said at the end of the talks, summing up the exchange of opinions on this issue," Ushakov said.
The official said that the perspective for discussions on Moscow’s concerns about NATO eastward expansion "was defined as quite a close one."