On Monday, Russia said it urgently needed a response from the US to its sweeping security demands, and warned of a possible military reaction unless political action was taken to alleviate its concerns.

Last week, Moscow unveiled a wish list of security ideas it wants to negotiate, including a guarantee from NATO to cease all military activities in Eastern Europe and Ukraine. Some of Russia's plans are obviously unacceptable, according to Washington, but the US will respond with more definite proposals on the framework of any talks later this week. 

A Russian diplomat in Vienna, Konstantin Gavrilov, said ties between Moscow and NATO had reached a "moment of truth."

"The conversation must be serious, and everyone in NATO understands perfectly well that concrete political action is required; otherwise, Russia will respond with a military-technical and military response," he stated.

Moscow Kremlin's Walls and Towers ✮ Sights of Russia 2019

Russia may be plotting an attack on its former Soviet neighbour, according to the US and Ukraine. Russia rejects this, claiming that the escalated standoff is due to Ukraine's developing relationship with NATO.

The Kremlin said it was too soon to assess the West's response, but that information from "different sources" regarding a willingness to consider the ideas was encouraging.

When asked about a Belarusian proposal to host Russian nuclear weapons in the event of similar deployments by the West in the region, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said Moscow had a variety of choices.

"It goes without saying that the deployment of various types of armaments near our borders that could pose a threat would necessitate equivalent measures to balance the situation. There are numerous options available here" he stated.