Ukraine strongly condemned Russia's "open" threats and responded strongly

Ukraine strongly condemned Russia's "open" threats and responded strongly

Ukraine on Thursday accused Russia of threatening to destroy it and warned Moscow that any escalation of hostilities would be met with a full military response.

Tensions have risen again in a long-running conflict in eastern Ukraine, where government forces have fought pro-Russian separatists since 2014.

Kiev and its Western allies this week sounded the alarm over a large contingent of Russian military personnel along Ukraine's northern and eastern borders, as well as on the Russian island of the Crimean peninsula adjacent to Moscow in 2014. ۔

During a press conference on Thursday, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitry Koliba said the rhetoric in Moscow had reached a fever pitch with the issuance of "indecent" statements to pundits and officials aimed at intimidating Kiev. ۔

"They are openly threatening Ukraine with war and the destruction of the Ukrainian state," Kolaba told reporters at a news conference with his counterparts from the former Soviet Union, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.

"Ukraine's red line is the state border. If Russia crosses the red line, it will suffer," Koliba added.

The visit of senior diplomats from the Baltic states to Ukraine is the latest show of support from European countries and the United States for Kiev, which has pledged support for "Atal".

Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabriel Landis Burgess reiterated to reporters on Thursday that "Ukraine will never be on its own."

"We stand with you, we stand in solidarity," he said.

'We are not afraid'

Following a show of solidarity, US President Joe Biden and German Chancellor Angela Merkel agreed on Thursday to demand that Russia reduce its troops on the Ukrainian border.

Ukrainian President Voldemir Zelensi is also expected to visit Paris on Friday to discuss rising tensions with his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron.

International observers of the conflict on Thursday warned of a "dramatic increase" in recent violations that hampered their work.

OSCE monitors in Europe said in a statement: "The number of violations recorded in the last two weeks has reached its highest level this year and compared to the same period a year earlier. I'm three times as much. "

Fighting has intensified since the beginning of the year, with Moscow and Kiev blaming each other for escalating violence between government forces and separatists in eastern Ukraine.

Ukraine says intermittent clashes have killed at least 28 Ukrainian soldiers and injured at least 68 others since January.

This week, he warned that there are currently 28,000 separatist fighters and more than 2,000 Russian military instructors and advisers in eastern Ukraine, while about 33,000 troops are stationed in Crimea.

However, Russia's Defense Ministry said the troops were responding to "threats" to NATO's actions by participating only in military exercises, which would end in three weeks.

The escalation of hostilities has led to a decline in the end of the ceasefire last July, which had brought relatively calm to the conflict.

"We are not afraid. Ukraine itself is strong enough and has reliable friends to defend its state," Kolba said Thursday.

"Russia needs to make it clear that its military adventures will have dire consequences."


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