On Thursday, the United Kingdom said that the most dangerous moment in the West’s deadlock with Russia seemed looming. Moscow held military drills in Belarus and the Black Sea after its military buildup at its border near Ukraine. The United States also urged Americans in the country to leave Ukraine instantly due to escalated threats of Russian military action. Likewise, Ukraine also launched war games.
On Thursday, Russia started ten days of huge military drills in Belarus and docked six warships at a strategic Black Sea Port. It drew sharp criticism from the officials of Ukraine who described Russian actions as further intensifying tensions in the region. pic.twitter.com/OnE6gtewF6
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However, leaders of all stakeholders indicated they hoped negotiation could still triumph in what United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson called the most significant security crisis of Europe for decades. In the latest round of dialogs, the foreign minister of the U.K. argued publicly with her Russian counterparts in Germany’s capital, where officials from France, Russia, Germany, and Ukraine were also holding talks.
Moscow massed over one hundred thousand near the Ukrainian border, denies Western allegations it may be preparing to attack its ex-Soviet neighbor, though it says it could take indefinite military-technical action unless demands met. At a press conference with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, Johnson said that Russia still has not decided whether to invade Ukraine according to his expectations.
Dangerous Moment for European Security
However, it does not mean it is impossible that something very catastrophic could happen very soon definitely. Stoltenberg also said that it was a risky moment for the security of European counties as the number of Russian troops was messing up. So, the warning time for a likely invasion is going down. On Thursday, around nine hours of dialogs between Russia and Ukraine failed to create a breakthrough on signing a mutual document. But both ends agreed to keep negotiating.
Furthermore, Russia stated that dialogs with France, Ukraine, and Germany on the eastern Ukraine conflict fell short of the new pact and slammed what it called a lack of clarity in the position of Ukraine. The State Department of the United States urged the citizens of America in Ukraine to leave instantly due to what it called increased risks of Russian armed action.
During an interview, Joe Biden, the President of the United States, told NBC News that Americans should leave now. The U.S. is dealing with one of the most significant defense forces globally. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov upbraided the U.K. Foreign Secretary Liz Truss when she visited Moscow. Lavrov said that Russia favored diplomatic talks to resolve the conflict.
Efforts for De-Escalation
On Thursday, the European Union said that it delivered one letter in response to the proposals of Russia on European security; the U.S. and NATO have earlier interpreted significant Russian demands as non-starters. Last week, Stoltenberg said Moscow would likely have thirty thousand troops in Belarus and S-400 air defense systems, SU-35 warrior aircraft, and nuclear-capable Iskander missiles.
On Thursday, Ukraine launched its own war games, which, like Russian joint military drills with Minsk, will run until 20th February. The Ukrainian military set to use western-funded anti-tank Javelin, Bayraktar drones, and NLAW missiles. Additionally, Ukraine was due to receive more shipments of American military aid later on Thursday.