Home WORLD EUROPA Tension mounts between Ukraine and Russia

Tension mounts between Ukraine and Russia

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Tensions have been at their highest for a few weeks between the two neighbors, already at daggers drawn since the annexation of Crimea in 2014 and a bloody conflict between Kiev and pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine.

In recent weeks, the United States, theNATO and the European Union have repeatedly expressed their concern about Russian troop movements on the Ukrainian border, alarmed at a possible invasion.

Speaking at a river press conference on Friday, Mr. Zelensky denounced a very dangerous rhetoric from Russia and estimated that this is the signal […] that an escalation is possible.

Zelensky said Russia was looking for a pretext for military intervention in Ukraine, citing for example criticism expressed by Moscow on the deployment of troops from theNATO in Ukraine and accusations by the Kremlin that Kiev is undermining the peace process with the separatists.

War rhetoric

Today there is intimidation saying that a war will take place tomorrow, he continued, while promising that his country was fully ready for any escalation with the Russian neighbor. He also called on his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin to say publicly that he has no plans to invade Ukraine.

We have to rely on ourselves, on our army, it is powerful, insisted Zelensky, when asked about the West’s potential support for Kiev in the event of an attack. Ukrainian forces later reported a soldier killed on the front line with separatists in the east.

The allies of Kiev, for their part, have increased their declarations of support. A Russian aggression in Ukraine will have consequences for Moscow, warned the secretary general ofNATO, Jens Soltenberg. United States keep a close watch the situation and go to consult their partners on how to discourage possible Russian action, said US Assistant Secretary of State Karen Donfried.

As for US President Joe Biden, he said on Friday that he was going very probably meet with his Russian and Ukrainian counterparts in an attempt to ease tensions between the two countries. He said to himself concerned by the situation, repeating its support for territorial integrity from Ukraine.

92,000 Russian soldiers at the border?

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his Polish counterpart Mateusz Morawiecki expressed in London the unwavering support from their countries to Ukraine, according to a statement from Downing Street.

The head of the Ukrainian military intelligence service, Kyrylo Boudanov, assured Sunday that Russia had massed nearly 92,000 troops on the borders of Ukraine, anticipating an offensive in late January or early February.

This hypothetical attack could involve air and artillery strikes, followed by airborne and amphibious assaults, in particular against Mariupol as well as a smaller incursion to the north via neighboring Belarus, Mr. Boudanov told the American media. Military Times.

Zelensky also assured Friday that he had received information about a planned coup d’etat scheduled for early December, involving some people in Russia and a Ukrainian oligarch, Renat Akhmetov, who immediately declared that it was a lie.

Zelensky, however, said he did not believe in the coup. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, when asked about the claims, replied that Russia does not do this sort of thing.

Two soldiers handle weapons.

Ukrainian navy soldiers clean up their weapons near the front line in the fighting between them and Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine.

Photo: dpa via getty images / Anatolii Stepanov

Moscow denies any attempt to interfere in Ukraine

Moscow for its part denies any plan in this direction and in return accuses Kiev, theNATO and the West to escalate tensions by carrying out military maneuvers near Russian borders.

In 2014, Russia, in reaction to the arrival of pro-Westerners to power in Kiev, annexed the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea after a military operation followed by a referendum denounced as illegal by Kiev and the West.

She is also accused of supporting militarily and financially pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine, with whom Ukrainian forces have been at war since 2014, in a conflict that left 13,000 dead.

A previous spike in tensions between the two countries took place in April, when Russia deployed tens of thousands of military personnel to Ukraine’s borders for military operations. military exercises and in response to activities threatening of the’NATO.

The Ukraine was then alarmed of a possible imminent invasion, while armed incidents multiplied in parallel between Kiev forces and separatists.

After several weeks of tension, Moscow had finally withdrawn its troops from the border.

While the Ukrainian army was overwhelmed in 2014, it now seems more confident, with the experience of combat accumulated and better equipped, in particular thanks to the help of its Western allies.

Ukraine has received, inter alia, ammunition, ships, American Javelin anti-tank missile devices and medical supplies from the United States. It also recently used a Turkish-made drone against separatists in the east.

The situation is not worse than in the spring, the number of soldiers [russes] is lower, President Zelensky ruled on Friday.

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