Joe Biden, German leader to discuss Ukraine at 7 February meeting

President and new German Chancellor Olaf Scholz will discuss Russian aggression toward during a meeting next month in Washington, the White House announced Thursday.

The one-on-one meeting will be Scholz’s first Oval Office sit-down since he took over leadership of his country in December.

Tensions have soared in recent weeks as the and its NATO partners express growing concern that a buildup of about 100,000 Russian troops near means that Moscow plans to invade its neighbor. Russia denies such intentions.

Germany’s refusal to join the U.S. and other NATO members in providing weapons to has annoyed some allies and raised questions about Berlin’s resolve in standing up to Russia.

The White House announced the visit a day after the U.S. told Russia in writing that it is rejecting its main demands for resolving the long-simmering crisis over Ukraine. The Kremlin said Thursday the U.S. rejection left little ground for optimism.

Biden and Scholz will also discuss cooperation on the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change and economic and security issues, the White House said.

Scholz became Germany’s ninth post-World War II chancellor in December, opening a new era for the European Union’s most populous nation and largest economy following the 16-year tenure of Angela Merkel.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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