US President Biden warns of a Russian invasion of Ukraine – his Secretary of State Austin shares this view. But he still had hope for a peaceful solution.
The basics in brief
- According to US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, Russia created the military conditions for an attack on Ukraine.
Russia has been building its armed forces in and around Ukraine for months, including in Belarus. “They are advancing and they are now ready to launch an offensive,” the Pentagon chief said on a visit to Lithuania on Saturday. Troops moved to the correct locations to launch an attack.
Austin said he shared US President Joe Biden’s assessment that Russian President Vladimir Putin made the decision to invade Ukraine. At the same time, the head of the Pentagon in Vilnius emphasized that conflict was “not inevitable” and that Putin could choose a different path.
We hope for a diplomatic solution
The United States, in a steady pace with our allies and partners, has offered the opportunity to seek a diplomatic solution. “Hopefully he’ll accept it,” Austin said. “We hope that he will step back from the brink of conflict and we hope that he will calm down,” he added. The US defense secretary said diplomatic efforts must continue until the last minute, until they are no longer able to do so.
The West has been concerned for weeks about the deployment of Russian forces near the Ukrainian border. In addition, the Russian military is conducting many maneuvers that fuel fears of an invasion of Ukraine. The United States, in particular, has been warning of such an invasion for weeks. However, Moscow persistently rejects such plans and assures daily that it is not planning an attack on Ukraine. It is also possible that the Russian side will want to raise concerns in order to persuade NATO to make concessions on its demands for new security guarantees.
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