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Discussed Ukraine with CIA, claims Russian foreign intelligence chief

Discussed Ukraine with CIA, claims Russian foreign intelligence chief

Russian foreign intelligence chief Sergei Naryshkin said he discussed Ukraine and nuclear issues in a meeting with CIA director William Burns. The meeting took place on November 14 in Turkey. It is the highest-level in-person contact with Moscow and Washington since the Ukraine war began in February.

Moscow has maintained that the subject matter was sensitive. Washington said Burns delivered a warning about the consequences if Russia used any nuclear weapons, reported Reuters.

Elizabeth Rood, chargee d'affaires at the US embassy in Moscow, said Burns did not negotiate anything and did not discuss a settlement of the conflict in Ukraine, reported RIA news agency. Naryshkin confirmed the statement and added that he can note that the "most frequently used words at this meeting were 'strategic stability', 'nuclear security', 'Ukraine' and 'Kyiv regime'." He added that the US and Russia had a channel to manage risks and if there was a need for another such conversation, it could happen.

Earlier today, Ukraine said Russia must withdraw to protect the Zaporizhzhia plant. Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said: "Russia must withdraw its heavy weapons and military personnel from the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant if the United Nations atomic watchdog's efforts to create a protection zone are to succeed."

He also met with Rafael Grossi, the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency on the sidelines of a NATO ministerial meeting. "We both agreed that the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant has to be protected and to achieve that Russia has to withdraw its heavy weapons and military personnel from the station. We will be considering ways on how to achieve this goal and Rafael will be doing shuttle diplomacy between Kyiv and Moscow on this," reported Al Jazeera.

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TAGS:UkraineUSWashingtonRussiaMoscowCIAKyivSergei NaryshkinRussian foreign intelligence chiefWilliam Burns
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