WORLD / EUROPE
Russia to respond if NATO increases presence near Ukraine: Kremlin
Published: Apr 03, 2021 08:01 AM

Photo taken on Dec. 2, 2020 shows the Saint Basil's Cathedral and the Kremlin in Moscow, capital of Russia. (Xinhua/Bai Xueqi)

Photo taken on Dec. 2, 2020 shows the Saint Basil's Cathedral and the Kremlin in Moscow, capital of Russia. (Xinhua/Bai Xueqi)


The Kremlin said on Friday extra steps will be taken if the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) strengthens forces around Ukraine amid the intensified Kiev-Donbas conflict.

Military build-up of the NATO will undoubtedly escalate tensions near the Russian-Ukrainian border, requiring Moscow to "take additional measures to ensure its security," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told a daily briefing.

Viewing Russia as an enemy in this situation is completely unacceptable and inappropriate as it has never posed a threat to others, he said.

Russia is not a party to this conflict between the Ukrainian government forces and the Donbas insurgents and cannot guarantee a comprehensive ceasefire between them, but it can work to ensure that previously-reached agreements are fulfilled, the spokesman added.

Peskov expressed serious concerns over "provocative actions" from the Ukrainian side and called the situation along the contact line in Donbas "very intimidating."

In a telephone conversation with Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba on Thursday, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that Washington is closely monitoring the situation in Donbas.

The ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine, which has claimed the lives of some 14,000 people and left as many as 40,000 wounded, began in April 2014.
blog comments powered by Disqus