Diplomacy KEEP READING list of 4 items list 1 of 4 Winter starts, Ukraine goes dark: Fear and resolve in blackouts list 2 of 4 Lavrov defends Russian attacks on Ukraine’s infrastructure list 3 of 4 US and France pledge Ukraine support amid Russia’s ‘brutal’ war list 4 of 4 Ukraine to curb activities of Russia-linked religious groups end of list US President Joe Biden said he is ready to meet Russia’s Vladimir Putin “if in fact there is an interest in him deciding that he’s looking for a way to end the war”. The Kremlin “hasn’t done that”, he noted. Putin is open to talks on a possible settlement in Ukraine, but the refusal of the US to recognise annexed territories as Russian is hindering a search for any potential compromise, the Kremlin said. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov accused the US and NATO of direct involvement in the Ukraine conflict, though he did not provide evidence. Biden used the first state visit of his presidency to demonstrate unity with France’s Emmanuel Macron on Ukraine. Discussing a potential peace deal with Russia, Macron said, “We will never urge the Ukrainians to make a compromise that will not be acceptable for them.” Putin told German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in a phone call the German and Western line on Ukraine was “destructive” and urged Berlin to rethink its approach, the Kremlin said. Several Ukrainian embassies abroad have received “bloody packages” containing animal eyes, Ukraine’s foreign ministry said, after a series of letter bombs were sent to sites in Spain. The International Atomic Energy Agency hopes to reach an agreement with Russia and Ukraine to create a protection zone at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant by the end of the year, the head of the UN atomic watchdog was quoted as saying.