Russian Troops Build Up at Ukrainian Border
The beefed-up presence of Russian forces on the Russia-Ukraine border in recent days has gotten the attention of NATO officials, who have counted some 20,000 troops in “battle-ready formations,” the Financial Times reported on Tuesday.
While this doesn’t constitute the Russian military’s strongest showing since the Ukraine conflict reached its current crisis point, Moscow does seem to be aiming to make a point that isn’t lost on the Ukrainian government.
While the number is still well below the 40,000 Russian troops deployed near Ukraine in April, the sharp rise in just a few days has been a cause for significant concern among Western military powers.
According to US officials, the Russian troop deployments are also now much closer to the Ukrainian border – all within 50km – than in previous instances.
Ukraine on Tuesday called upon Russia to halt its build-up of forces along its border as fears mounted that Moscow could invade to prevent the advancing army of its southern neighbour from finishing off pro-Russian separatists increasingly encircled and bunkered down in eastern Ukraine’s largest cities ahead of a final showdown.
–Posted by Kasia Anderson