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Biden wants to prevent Russia-Ukraine conflict, but experts say time is running out

  • December 07, 2021

There have been reports of an increase in Russian troops on Ukraine’s border for weeks, movements which have led NATO’s secretary general, Jens Stoltenberg, to warn that NATO members should prepare for the worst when it comes to Russia and Ukraine.

“You can discuss whether the likelihood for an incursion is 20% or 80%, it doesn’t matter. We need to be prepared for the worst,” Stoltenberg told reporters on Nov.30 after a meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Riga, Latvia.

“There is no certainty, no clarity about exactly what are the Russian intentions, and they may actually evolve and change,” the NATO chief added, noting “they’ve done it before” referring to Crimea.

Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014 and has been accused of sending troops and weapons to support pro-Russian uprisings in two self-proclaimed republics in the Donbass region of eastern Ukraine, although Moscow denies this.

Maxim Samorukov, a fellow at the Carnegie Moscow Center, wrote on Monday that, “Putin is being much blunter about what he wants in Ukraine and the lengths to which he is prepared to go to obtain it.”

“In just a few days, Putin has said that he wants a deal to prevent Ukraine from ever joining NATO. He also wants a Western promise never to deploy NATO military infrastructure in Ukraine,” Samorukov said in an editorial.

He added that, over the last year, the Kremlin has had two messages for the U.S. “First, Russia attaches paramount importance to Ukraine. Second, its patience with the status quo is running thin, and it is ready to take drastic measures to reverse the situation.”

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