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U.S. says ‘all options’ on the table over Russian troop build-up near Ukraine By Reuters


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A serviceman of the Ukrainian Armed Forces takes half in navy drills at a coaching floor near the border with Russian-annexed Crimea in Kherson area, Ukraine, on this handout image launched by the General Staff of the Armed Forces of

By Humeyra Pamuk and Simon Lewis

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -All choices are on the table in how to reply to Russia’s ‘massive and weird’ troop build-up near Ukraine’s border, and the NATO alliance will resolve what the subsequent transfer will likely be following consultations subsequent week, the State Department’s prime U.S. diplomat for European affairs stated on Friday.

“As you can appreciate, all options are on the table and there’s a toolkit that includes a whole range of options,” Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Karen Donfried informed reporters in a phone briefing.

“It’s now for the alliance to decide what are the next moves that NATO wants to take,” she stated, talking forward of a go to by U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken to Latvia and Sweden subsequent week to attend NATO and Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) conferences, the place she stated Moscow’s “large and unusual” troop construct up can be topping the agenda.

“Next week, we will talk about our assessment of what’s happening on Russia’s border with Ukraine and we will begin that conversations of what are the options that are on the table and what it is that NATO as an alliance would like to do together,” she stated.

U.S., NATO and Ukrainian officers have raised the alarm in latest weeks over what they are saying are uncommon Russian troop actions nearer to Ukraine, suggesting that Moscow could also be poised to launch a assault on its neighbor, accusations Russia has rejected as fear-mongering.

Asked if Blinken was going to satisfy with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov whereas in Stockholm, Donfried stated she had no bulletins to make on such a bilateral however added: “Stay tuned.”

The head of Ukraine’s navy intelligence informed the Military Times outlet this weekend that Russia had greater than 92,000 troops massed round Ukraine’s borders and was making ready for an assault by the finish of January or starting of February.

Moscow has dismissed such strategies as inflammatory and stated it was not threatening anybody and defended its proper to deploy its troops because it wished.

Donfried was requested what the United States noticed particularly completely different in Russia’s troop construct up this time, however she didn’t elaborate apart from saying it was ‘massive and weird.’

Russia’s intentions stay unclear, and East-West tensions are operating excessive with Ukraine, Russia and NATO all conducting navy drills and Moscow accusing Washington of rehearsing a nuclear assault on Russia earlier this month.

Asked if latest escalation has prompted Washington to extra critically contemplate deploying everlasting troops in NATO’s jap flank, Donfried didn’t elaborate on the particular level however stated NATO international ministers subsequent week can be discussing the wider technique for alliance’s posturing in twenty first century.

At the OSCE assembly in Stockholm, Donfried stated, Blinken can even increase Russia’s occupation of Ukrainian and Georgian territories, the battle in Nagorno-Karabakh and the disaster in Belarus.

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