Ukraine crisis: The Pentagon warns of the continued flow of Russian troops to the border

Washington (AFP) 02/10/2022 08:19

The Pentagon: Russia continues to send troops to the border with Ukraine

  • The Pentagon: We note the flow of additional capabilities from other parts of Russia towards the borders with Ukraine and Belarus
  • The Pentagon indicates that there are “more than 100,000” military personnel currently

The United States said, on Wednesday, that Russia It continues to strengthen its military presence on the borders of Ukraine, at a time when France confirmed that it had obtained pledges from the Kremlin that there would be no further “escalation”.

A spokesperson said The Pentagon John Kirby during a press conference “We have continued, including in the past 24 hours, to note the flow of additional capabilities from other parts of Russia towards the borders with Ukraine and Belarus.”

Kirby added, “We will not give specific numbers, but they continue to increase,” noting that there are “more than 100,000” military personnel currently.

“We are also seeing indications that other combat groups are on their way,” the Pentagon spokesman added.

He stressed that Russian President Vladimir Putin “continues to strengthen his military capabilities … Every day he gives himself more options, every day he strengthens his capabilities, every day he continues to destabilize an already very tense situation.”

The spokesman noted that the United States had no intention of carrying out any operations in non-NATO Ukraine, while the vanguard of 3,000 American soldiers sent to “reassure” allies of the alliance’s eastern wing began to deploy in Poland and Romania.

And John Kirby noted that it is possible that the US military would participate in relief operations if the flow of US citizens residing in Ukraine to the two countries in the event of a Russian invasion, but that this may not be necessary.

The United States announced weeks ago that it did not intend to militarily evacuate Americans from Ukraine, as it did in Kabul last summer.

Washington accuses Moscow of preparing for a possible large-scale invasion of Ukraine in the near future, although US officials believe that Vladimir Putin has not yet made a decision on whether to launch an invasion.

For his part, the French President met his Russian counterpart in Moscow on Monday, and then his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky on Tuesday in Kiev.

Emmanuel Macron confirmed that he had received pledges from the Russian President that there would be no further “escalation”, and Paris confirmed that this visit enabled “to move forward” to calm the situation.

Russia sends two S-400 battalions to Belarus for exercises
Russia is sending two S-400 battalions to Belarus for the exercises. Reuters

Macron informed Biden of the contents of his consultations with the Russian and Ukrainian presidents

In a related context, US President Joe Biden consulted by phone Wednesday with his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron, who informed him of the contents of his “recent meetings” with the Russian and Ukrainian presidents in Moscow and Kiev, according to what the White House announced.

“They also talked about the existing diplomatic and deterrence efforts, which are being made in close coordination with our allies and partners, in response to Russia’s continued military deployment on Ukraine’s borders,” the US presidency said in a brief statement, without commenting on the outcome of Macron’s tour.

In turn, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz expressed optimism, praising Wednesday the “progress” that has resulted from the resumption of intensive diplomatic contacts between Russia and Western countries.

On Wednesday, Ukraine confirmed that there are “real opportunities” to reduce the tension on its border with Russia, as Moscow has mobilized more than one hundred thousand soldiers in a move that the West fears is in preparation for a military invasion of the pro-Western neighbor, while the Kremlin spoke of “positive indications.”

For its part, the United States is still secretive about the outcome of the French President’s tour.

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