First entry: Thursday, April 8, 2021, 05:56
Ukraine believes that the government of Russian President Vladimir Putin is concentrating troops and armaments on the border in an effort to unite the Russians against a “foreign enemy” and divert attention from internal problems, the head of national security said in an interview with gave to Reuters.
Oleksiy Danilov, secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, said Kiev would not try to retake territory in the Donbas region by force, but was ready to defend the country against any further attack.
Ukraine, the United States and NATO have accused Russia of mobilizing troops near the border with Ukraine, but Moscow says its military moves are only defensive and that its forces will remain there as long as it sees fit. Kiev and Moscow have blamed each other for the recent escalation of violence in eastern Ukraine, where 14,000 people have died since 2014.
Any further escalation will depend on Putin’s actions, Danilov said. “The issue of war depends solely on Putin,” he said.
“Putin does not feel sorry for the people and that is a problem. “For us, any loss at the border is painful, for us it is a tragedy.”
Russia is gaining momentum in the run-up to parliamentary elections in September, and internal problems, such as the Kremlin’s frustration with dissident Alexei Navalny, make it easier for Moscow to focus on an external enemy, Danilov said. “There are internal factors that, in our view, are the key. “They invent (enemies) and for them (the Kremlin) the external enemy is an element for solving internal problems.”
Last Updated: Thursday, 8 April 2021, 05:56