Biden said his administration was “putting together what I believe to be the most comprehensive and meaningful set of initiatives to make it very, very difficult for Mr. Putin to go ahead and do what people are worried he may do.”

The Kremlin said Friday that President Vladimir Putin will seek binding guarantees precluding NATO’s expansion to Ukraine during a planned call with U.S. President Joe Biden, while the Ukrainian defense minister warned that Russia could invade his country next month.

With tensions between Russia and the West escalating, Biden said his administration was “putting together what I believe to be the most comprehensive and meaningful set of initiatives to make it very, very difficult for Mr. Putin to go ahead and do what people are worried he may do.”

“But that’s in play right now,” he told reporters in Washington.

Ukraine, the U.S. and other Western allies are increasingly concerned that a Russian troop buildup near the Ukrainian border could signal Moscow’s intention to invade. The U.S. has threatened the Kremlin with the toughest sanctions yet if it launches an attack, while Russia has warned that any presence of NATO troops and weapons on Ukrainian soil would cross a “red line.”

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