Even as they acknowledged the threat and prepared to accept a supply of US military weapons to bolster up their defences, Ukraine’s authorities worked to convince their population that a feared invasion from neighbouring Russia was not near.
The United States and its NATO partners have been rushing to prepare for a possible conflict with Russia, despite Russia’s denials that it is plotting an attack.
Diplomatic efforts have been fruitless, and this week tensions have risen even worse. A NATO “reaction force” for Europe has been announced, with the United States ordering 8,500 troops to a higher state of readiness in preparation for a possible deployment to the Baltic Sea region “in case of necessity.
U.S. diplomats’ families have been told to leave Ukraine, and non-essential embassy staff have been given the option of leaving as well, according to a statement from the State Department. The British government has also announced the departure of some of its diplomats and their families from the embassy.
Even while the Ukrainian government has tried to portray a sense of calm, recent polls suggest that just half of the population believes an invasion is likely.
Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov said in parliament on Tuesday that “as of today, there are no grounds to assume” that Russia is ready to invade soon, stressing that its forces have not established what he called a fighting group that could force their way through the border. Reznikov said.
Don’t worry, Reznikov reassured. “There’s no need to bring anything.”
Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky and other officials have issued several guarantees on the country’s security. In an interview that aired later in the day, Reznikov admitted that there were “risky situations” in the current circumstances “things that “might happen in the future”
A NATO-planned provocations are being used as a pretext by the West to accuse Russia of an invasion. Dmitry Peskov, a spokesman for the Kremlin, accused the United States on Tuesday of “fomenting tensions” over Ukraine, a former Soviet state with which Russia has been engaged in a long-running dispute.
When a Kremlin-friendly Ukrainian president was toppled in 2014, Moscow seized control of the Crimean Peninsula and backed separatist rebels in the country’s eastern industrial heartland. Since then, more than 14,000 people have been murdered in clashes between Ukrainian forces and insurgents backed by Russia, and efforts to find a diplomatic solution to the crisis have stagnated.
In the most recent impasse, Russia has demanded assurances from the West that NATO will never admit Ukraine and that the alliance would limit other steps such as stationing soldiers in former Soviet bloc countries. This standoff could only be avoided if NATO agreed to a permanent ban on Ukraine’s participation in the alliance, which is a nonstarter for the alliance.
On the other hand, Moscow has accused Kyiv of amassing forces near rebel-controlled areas in the east in preparation for a possible military takeover.
Analysts believe that the Ukrainian administration is unable to keep the country quiet while guaranteeing that the West provides enough aid in the event of an invasion.
“Ukrainian authorities are trying to prevent destabilisation and fear inside the nation,” political analyst Volodymyr Fesenko said, citing the reassuring remarks that there is no imminent Russian invasion. This snowball is becoming increasingly difficult for the authorities in Kyiv to control because of the Kremlin’s plans to destabilise Ukraine and instil fear and frenzy among the Ukrainian people.”
According to a poll conducted by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology, 48 percent of Ukrainians believe that an invasion is a serious threat in the near future. Despite the fact that many are aware that recent measures could be part of an information warfare strategy, 39% of respondents stated they don’t expect this to occur.
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The margin of error for the nationwide survey of 1,205 participants, conducted from January 21 to 22, was no greater than 3.2 percentage points.
Some locals are keeping a close eye on everything.
No one can deny that Russia’s actions and a possible conflict with Ukraine could lead to severe economic hardships for the Ukrainian people. A 46-year-old construction worker in Kyiv said, “But we will be compelled to fight and defend ourselves.” However, my entire family does not want to fight and lives in constant tension. I am willing to do so.” As the days pass, the news becomes increasingly frightening.
President Biden’s announcement on Monday that U.S.-based forces would be on heightened alert for Europe suggests that the Biden administration is losing faith in Vladimir Putin’s ability to back down from his threat to invade Ukraine.
Equipment and ammunition from the United States are slated to arrive in Ukraine on Tuesday as part of a $200 million package of security aid.
The United States is joining other NATO members in stepping up their defensive capabilities in Eastern Europe. A frigate and F-16 aeroplanes are being sent to Lithuania by Denmark; Spain is sending four fighter jets to Bulgaria and three ships to join NATO naval forces in the Black Sea; and France is ready to send troops in Romania.