US, Ukraine’s top diplomats hold ‘important’ call before NATO summit


(Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said late on Sunday they held a phone call to discuss this week’s NATO summit and Kyiv’s counteroffensive campaign to reclaim land taken by Russia.

“I had an important discussion with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba today ahead of this week’s NATO Summit,” Blinken said on Twitter.

The U.S. Department of State spokesperson Matthew Miller said in a separate statement that the two diplomats discussed also “progress in Ukraine’s counteroffensive.”

Kuleba said on Twitter that the call was to work out details ahead of the NATO summit, which starts on Tuesday in Vilnius.

“I had a productive call with Secretary Blinken ahead of Vilnius,” Kuleba said on Twitter. “With 48 hours left, we are working to make its final decisions a win for all: Ukraine, NATO, and global security.”

Ukraine is hoping to receive a clear signal on its NATO membership prospects in Vilnius. The White House said on Friday that President Joe Biden and fellow leaders of the U.S.-led alliance will discuss what steps Ukraine must complete.

(Reporting by Lidia Kelly in Melbourne and Urvi Dugar in Bengaluru; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)

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