Yesterday, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg wrote a letter to Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to participate in a dialogue within the framework of the NATO-Russia Council to avoid a conflict in Ukraine. “Despite Moscow’s claims, we have not yet received any indication of a withdrawal or expansion,” he added. On the contrary, the Russian concentration continues.
With about 150,000 Russian troops on the Ukrainian border, Stoltenberg believed that Europe was currently building the largest military force since the Cold War. He reiterated the firm commitment of NATO members to protect each other, warning that it would receive more NATO troops as Russia seeks to reduce NATO’s presence on its borders.
In turn, US Vice President Kamala Harris threatened to strengthen the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) forces in Eastern Europe if Russia invaded Ukraine, threatening Moscow with severe and immediate sanctions. He said in a speech during the Munich Security Conference: “We will not stop at economic activity, but we will strengthen the strength of our NATO allies in the East in the event of an invasion.” He added that Russia was ready for talks, but at the same time was slowing down diplomacy, and that the process of withdrawing troops announced by the Kremlin was inconsistent with reality. He recalled that the United States had stationed about 6,000 additional troops in Romania, Poland and Germany. But he noted that the troops will not take part in the fighting in Ukraine, but will protect every inch of NATO territory.
“Russia needs a united Western response and be prepared for dire consequences, but the United States is very open to negotiations,” Harris said. “Our strength should not be underestimated because, above all, it is our unity that, as we have always shown, requires more strength to build than it takes to tear something apart,” he added. “National borders should not be forcibly changed,” he said.
He explained that if the United States and its allies invade Ukraine, it will impose massive and unprecedented economic measures against Russia. “I can say with full confidence that if Russia invades Ukraine, massive and unprecedented economic measures will be imposed,” he added. “We have prepared fast, tough and coherent economic measures,” he said. “We will target Russian financial institutions and key industries. We will further strengthen the eastern part of NATO.”
In addition, the German news agency “NATO” cited sources, saying that in the wake of the crisis with Russia, NATO has increased readiness among its thousands of soldiers. According to sources close to the coalition, NATO’s rapid response forces could be deployed in seven days instead of 30 days. For other divisions of the forces, the “operational notice” period is now implemented within 30 days, not 45 days, which will take effect immediately, he explained. The coalition announced the withdrawal of all operating personnel from the Ukrainian capital, Kiev. A spokesman said: “The safety of our staff is a top priority, so staff have been relocated to Brussels.”
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