Russia’s invasion of neighboring Ukraine has ground on for nearly two months and left much of the country devastated.
In response, the United Nations (U.N.) asked for a meeting this week between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in the hopes of finding peace.
According to NBC News, that request was put forward on Tuesday by United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres.
U.N. secretary-general says “urgent steps” are needed to end the conflict
“The Secretary-General said, at this time of great peril and consequence, he would like to discuss urgent steps to bring about peace in Ukraine and the future of multilateralism based on the Charter of the United Nations and international law,” U.N. Secretary-General spokeswoman Stephane Dujarric was quoted as saying in a statement.
“He noted that both Ukraine and the Russian Federation are founding members of the United Nations and have always been strong supporters of this Organization,” Dujarric went on to add.
Fox News reported earlier this month that Zelenskyy has categorically rejected any suggestion that his country should cede land in exchange for peace.
Biden administration imposes additional sanctions on Russia
Guterres’s call for a bilateral meeting came even as the United States announced additional sanctions targeting Russia.
CNBC reported on Wednesday that they were aimed at the Russian commercial bank Transkapitalbank and oligarch Konstantin Malofeyev along with other individuals who are said to be helping Russia evade sanctions.
Meanwhile, other sanctions are directed toward Bitriver, a digital currency company that plays a key role in Russia’s digital currency mining industry.
Brian Nelson serves as the Treasury Department’s under secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, and he explained that the Biden administration will keep ratcheting up the financial pressure on Russia.
“Treasury can and will target those who evade, attempt to evade, or aid the evasion of U.S. sanctions against Russia, as they are helping support Putin’s brutal war of choice,” said
“The United States will work to ensure that the sanctions we have imposed, in close coordination with our international partners, degrade the Kremlin’s ability to project power and fund its invasion,” he added.