‘Russian invasion of Ukraine possible’ – US warns EU

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The US is sounding the alarm in the European Union that Russia is considering a military invasion of Ukraine, as tensions between Moscow and the “27” bloc escalate due to the migration crisis on the Belarus-Poland border, but also due to energy crisis, reports Bloomberg.

As Washington monitors the gathering of Russian forces near the Ukrainian border, U.S. officials have briefed their EU counterparts on concerns about a possible imminent Russian military operation, according to sources familiar with the matter.

The assessment is likely based on information the United States has not yet shared with European governments, which should happen before any collective response to the issue, the sources said. They are currently relying on publicly known evidence, they added.

Russia says the deployment of military forces inside its territory is an internal matter and denies being aggressive, while blaming the United States for provoking its warships in the Black Sea off Russian soil.

Similar tensions erupted in the spring when the United States and NATO accused Russia of gathering up to 100,000 troops near the Ukrainian border, along with armored and warplanes. The crisis escalated when Joe Biden invited his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, to offer him a summit in June.

White House officials did not respond to a request for comment.

The CIA director’s visit to Moscow

Russia’s latest move led to CIA Director Bill Burns’ visit to Moscow earlier in November, where he spoke by telephone with Putin himself. German Chancellor Angela Merkel also asked the Russian head of state, in a telephone conversation on Wednesday, to exert influence on Belarus, allied with Moscow, in order to de-escalate the crisis on Belarus’ border with Poland. East. Putin refused.

Putin and Merkel spoke again on Thursday about Ukraine and Belarus. The Russian leader criticized Ukraine’s use of fighter jets against pro-Russian separatist rebels controlling Ukrainian territory in the east, in violation of previous agreements, and criticized US moves in the Black Sea.

Russia has no plans to start a war in Ukraine, although Moscow must show readiness to use force if necessary, a source close to the Kremlin told Bloomberg.

An attack is not very likely as Russian troops would face popular resistance in Kiev and other cities, but there is a plan to respond “to the provocations of Ukraine”, another Russian official said.

Lukashenko and gas

As the West prepares new sanctions against the Belarusian regime, Mr Lukashenko has warned that a pipeline carrying Russian gas to the EU will be closed if Poland closes its border with his country. “I would suggest to the Polish leadership, the Lithuanians and other idiots to think before they speak,” he said.

U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris and French President Emmanuel Macron discussed Ukraine in detail in Paris on Wednesday, according to a US official. The issue of Belarus was also discussed at length.

Russia has orchestrated the immigration crisis on the Polish and Baltic borders and is trying to destabilize the region, two US government officials said.

US concerns about Russia’s intentions are based on a series of indications that are very reminiscent of the post-Russian annexation of Ukraine to Crimea, another US government official has said.

Russian officials have denied the allegations.

“Russia has nothing to do with what is happening on the border between Belarus and Poland,” Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peshkov told a news conference on Thursday.

The information shared by US officials with Brussels officials, however, was particularly worrying, a Bloomberg source said.

“I hope that now everyone can clearly see who is seeking peace and who is gathering 100,000 troops on our borders,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said in a televised address late Wednesday night. “The psychological pressure from Russia does not affect us, our intelligence services have all the information they need, our army can resist anytime, anywhere.”

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Source From: Capital

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