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'Gigantic mistake for him' if Putin invades Ukraine: Biden

US President Joe Biden warned Monday that it would be a "gigantic mistake” for Russian President Vladimir Putin to make any military moves against Ukraine amid concern over Moscow’s buildup of troops near its border.

"He has to realize that it would be a gigantic mistake for him to move on Ukraine. The impact on Europe and the rest of the world would be devastating, and he would pay a heavy price," Biden told reporters at a joint press conference with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

Biden reiterated that Washington would impose severe sanctions on Russia if Putin decided to invade Ukraine, which he said would affect the US and European nations as well, "but it will have a profound impact on his economy."

Scholz’s visit is his first to Washington since taking office in December, and the two leaders discussed bilateral relations, cooperation between their two countries and potential sanctions against Russia amid tensions near the Ukrainian border.

Biden praised Germany for its role "in pushing de-escalation of tensions and encouraging dialogue with Russia through the Normandy format.

"But if Russia makes the choice to further invade Ukraine, we are jointly ready and all of NATO is ready," he said.

The US president also said the Nord Stream 2 pipeline will not move ahead if Ukraine is invaded by Russia.

"If Russia invades -- that means tanks or troops crossing the border of Ukraine again -- then there will no longer be a Nord Stream 2. We will bring an end to it," said Biden.


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