US Issues Severe Warning to Iran, Meets with Russia over Ukraine

The United States held talks with Russia on Monday over issues related to Ukraine, while America issued a stern warning to Iran of severe consequences if Americans attacked after Tehran sanctioned 51 U.S. nationals on Saturday.

U.S. meets with Russia over Ukraine amid growing tension

As fears mount over a possible invasion as Russia continues a buildup of troops near Ukraine’s border, officials from the United States held high-stakes talks with Russian officials on Monday in Geneva, Switzerland, CNN reported.

The talks come following months of tension where Russia has assembled tens of thousands of soldiers near the Ukraine-Russian border.

Two top advisers from each country, U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman and Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov, began a meeting on Monday morning, following a working dinner the previous evening.

“The United States is committed to the principle of ‘nothing about you, without you’ when it comes to the security of our European allies and partners, including Ukraine,” a U.S. spokesperson said. “We are lashed up at every level with our allies and partners, and we will continue to be in the days and weeks ahead.”

However, the efforts at diplomacy, a top Russian official said Moscow would not be pressured into making concessions to the United States during diplomatic talks about Ukraine, according to a report by CBS.

“Severe consequences”: Iran warned against attacking Americans, after it sanctions 51 U.S. nationals

White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan said Iran imposed sanctions on 52 people on Saturday. Reuters reported that the decision came as proxy militias backed by Tehran continued to attack American troops in the Middle East.

On Saturday, Iran’s Foreign Ministry said 51 Americans had been targeted for “terrorism” and human rights violations. The sanctions include many U.S. military members.

The sanctions were issued over the 2020 killing of General Qassem Soleimani, the commander of Iran’s Quds Force, the overseas arm of the elite Revolutionary Guards. Soleimani was killed in Iraq in a drone strike on Jan. 3, 2020, ordered by then-president Donald Trump.

The Iranian sanctions allow authorities to seize any assets held in Iran. However, the apparent absence of any such assets means that the declaration is likely symbolic.

Among those Americans sanctioned by Iran include U.S. General Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and former White House national security adviser Robert O’Brien.