The United States is “increasingly” worried by Russia’s biggest troop build-up on the Ukrainian border in years and fighting between Moscow-backed separatists and Ukrainian troops, the White House said Thursday.
“The United States is increasingly concerned by recent escalating Russian aggressions in eastern Ukraine, including Russian troop movements on Ukraine’s border,” Press Secretary Jen Psaki told reporters. “These are all deeply concerning signs.”
Psaki said that the number of Russian troops across the border from the former Soviet republic was greater “than at any time since 2014,” when war in eastern Ukraine first broke out and Russia seized the Crimea region.
Referring also to the recent deaths of Ukrainian soldiers, Psaki said “these are all deeply concerning signs.”
She noted that President Joe Biden had talked with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky by phone last week and said that Washington was in contact with NATO allies about “the increase in tensions, in ceasefire violations and regional tensions.”
© AFP 2021