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Ukraine: Putin threatens his Western rivals with a “military” response



VLadimir Putin is warning his Western rivals against a background of growing tensions over the Ukrainian issue. Tuesday, December 21, the Russian president promised that he would provide a “military and technical” response if these Westerners do not put an end to their policy, which the Kremlin considers as threatening. In front of the flower of the Russian army and the Ministry of Defense, Vladimir Poutine declared: in the event of “maintaining the very clearly aggressive line of our Western colleagues, we will take adequate military and technical measures of retaliation”.

“We have every right to do that,” he said. For the Kremlin, the United States and NATO are strengthening their presence at the Russian borders by arming Ukraine, supporting it politically, carrying out maneuvers and deploying forces in the Black Sea. “We are on our doorstep, we cannot back down,” Vladimir Putin said.

Westerners accuse Moscow of aggressiveness

Defense Minister Sergei Choïgou added, accusing Washington of preparing “provocations” in Ukraine, in particular organizing the sending of an “undetermined chemical component” to the front of the conflict between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian separatists. According to him, 120 members of private military companies are also in the region to train “Ukrainian special forces and radical groups in combat actions”.

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The West, on the contrary, accuse Moscow of aggressive inclinations, the Russian army having massed tens of thousands of soldiers on the border with Ukraine, a country from which Russia has already annexed part of the territory. The Nordic countries, a region neighboring Russia, have in turn expressed in a joint document their “great concern” at Russian military activity at the gates of Ukraine. As he had done during an interview with his American counterpart Joe Biden, the Russian leader demanded that Washington give Russia guarantees by signing treaties prohibiting any future expansion of NATO.

Vladimir Putin says he does not want an “armed conflict”

Vladimir Poutine has assured that he does not want an “armed conflict”, a “bloodshed”, and prefers a “politico-diplomatic solution”. Russia presented two treaties last week, one for the United States and the other for NATO, summarizing its demands for de-escalation. These texts prohibit the enlargement of NATO, to Ukraine in particular, and limit Western military cooperation in Eastern Europe and the former USSR, without imposing similar measures on Russia.

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Later in the day, Vladimir Poutine called for “serious discussions” on these proposals with NATO, during his first telephone interview with the new German Chancellor, Olaf Scholz. For her part, the US Assistant Secretary of State for Europe, Karen Donfried, said on Tuesday that she expected the dialogue on Ukraine and security in Europe to start “in January”. by warning Moscow that some of its demands were “unacceptable”.

Ukraine wants a timetable for its NATO and EU membership

At the same time, Americans and Europeans are threatening Moscow with unparalleled economic sanctions in the event of an offensive in Ukraine. However, they do not plan to send troops to the rescue. These threats of sanctions were therefore greeted in Moscow with a shrug of the shoulders, especially since no retaliatory measure has ever led the Kremlin to back down. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky took offense on Tuesday at Western reluctance to set a timetable for his NATO and European Union membership.

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“We cannot accept the idea (…) of (membership in) the EU in 30 years and (in) NATO in about 50 years,” he said. Ukraine sees these alliances as essential to its survival in the face of Russian ambitions. In response to a pro-Western revolution, Moscow has already annexed Crimea in 2014, while being widely regarded, despite its denials, as the godfather of pro-Russian separatists at war with Kiev for almost eight years.

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The Kremlin holds the West responsible for the breach of confidence, NATO having expanded to the East from the 1990s, violating, according to Moscow, promises made after the fall of the Soviet Union. Russia marks in December the 30th anniversary of the end of the USSR, an episode described as “the greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the 20th century.e century ”by Vladimir Putin.




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