Russia accuses Ukraine of moving heavy artillery to line of confrontation with pro-Russian separatists


Russia, in a new escalation of hostile rhetoric towards Kiev, today accused Ukraine of moving heavy artillery to the front lines of battles with pro-Russian separatists and of not participating in the peace process.

Statements by Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova showed no indication that Moscow was willing to soften its sharp criticism of Ukraine, despite a two-hour telephone conversation this week between Russian President Vladimir Putin and US counterpart Joe Joe.

“Negotiations for a peaceful settlement have practically reached a dead end,” Zakharova told reporters, referring to the seven-year clash between Ukrainian and separatist forces in the eastern Donbass region.

Zakharova, in a post on the ministry’s Twitter account, said that “with the support of NATO countries supplying weapons to the country, Kiev is strengthening its army on the contact line in Donbas.”

Ukraine is “pretending”

She said Ukraine was only “pretending” to comply with its obligations under the 2014 and 2015 Minsk agreements aimed at ending the conflict.

Zakharova criticized the European Union, saying it was directly responsible for what happened in Ukraine. “Brussels envoys were present in the so-called Maidan squares and encouraged those who carried out unconstitutional coups.”

There was no immediate response from the Ukrainian side. Kiev has denied Russian allegations that it plans to retake territory by force, and President Volodymyr Zelensky said this week that he hoped to reach a new ceasefire agreement.

The Biden and Putin talks

US President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin held a video conference to discuss the situation in Ukraine, with US President Joe Biden expressing concern over the possible strengthening of the that Moscow will face serious economic consequences in the event of an invasion of Ukraine.

Putin called the talk of an invasion “provocative” and accused Ukraine and NATO of fomenting tensions.

The head of the Russian armed forces, Valery Gerasimov, speaking today before the military’s foreign counterparts, said that the situation in eastern Ukraine is escalating and Kiev is responsible for this escalation.

“Deliveries of unmanned aerial vehicles and aircraft to Ukraine are pushing the Ukrainian authorities to take sharp and dangerous steps,” Gerasimov said. given by the United States “with the result that the already tense situation in the eastern part of that country is exacerbated”.

“Any provocations by the Ukrainian authorities to resolve the problems in Donbass vigorously will be suppressed,” Gerasimov said, adding that reports of a Russian-led invasion of Ukraine were false.

Source: ΑΠΕ-ΜΠΕ  

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