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House Progressives Urge Biden to Engage in Direct Talks With Russia


WASHINGTON – A progressive group of the House of Representatives on Monday urged President Biden to engage in direct diplomatic negotiations with Russia in an effort to “find a realistic framework for a ceasefire.”

In a letter Led by Representative Pramila Jayapal of Washington, the chairwoman of the Radical Caucus, the 30 House Democrats urged the Biden administration to “pursue all diplomatic avenues to support such a solution.” acceptable to the Ukrainian people.”

“We agree with the administration’s position that the United States is not the place to pressure the Ukrainian government for sovereign decisions,” the lawmakers wrote, adding: “But as countries legislator responsible for spending tens of billions of dollars in American taxes on military assistance in the conflict, we believe that such involvement in this war also creates accountability for the United States in seriously exploring all possible avenues, including engaging directly with Russia.”

The letter comes less than a week after Representative Kevin McCarthy of California, the minority leader, said that if Republicans win a majority in next month’s midterm elections, his members will not really. “Write blank checks” for Ukraine, suggesting it may be more difficult to secure congressional approval of major aid payments.

That moment led to an unusual backlash among centrist Democrats, who wondered whether support for Ukraine could erode between both the hardline left and right in the political crisis. Congress when the conflict drags on or not.

Representative Ruben Gallego, Democratic Party of Arizona, wrote on Twitter: “How to end the war? Win quickly. How fast is it to win? By giving Ukraine weapons to defeat Russia”.

The content of the letter has given libertarians in the House of Commons new interest – at least for now – to cut off additional military or humanitarian funding to Ukraine. Ms Jayapal in March issued a similar statement on behalf of the Parliament’s Radical Conference calling for “a negotiated, quick solution to prevent further loss of life” and “a solution diplomacy for this crisis”.

In May, when the House voted to pass $40 billion in aid to Ukraine, not a single Democrat opposed it.

Administration officials have repeatedly said that any decision on direct negotiations to end the war must come from President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine, a stance they reiterated Monday when asked about Letters.

“We have been very clear: there is nothing about Ukraine without Ukraine,” Karine Jean-Pierre, the White House press secretary, said at a news conference with reporters Monday when asked about the picture. letters from progressives. “And we have been very, very clear that this is the decision that President Zelensky will have to make when it comes to any kind of negotiation with Russia, any kind of negotiation – that’s what the Ukrainians need to do. perform. We will continue to support them for as long as we can. “

In total, Congress has approved more than $60 billion for Ukraine this year alone with sky-high margins, largest amount of military aid The United States has been committed to any country for a single year in nearly half a century, since the Vietnam War.

Jim Tankersley contribution report.

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