British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss on Thursday condemned the Kremlin’s aggressive rhetoric toward Ukraine and the gathering of troops near the border with the former Soviet republic.
Agence France-Presse reported this. “I condemn the Kremlin’s aggressive and rogue rhetoric against Ukraine and NATO,” Truss said in a statement.
It also described the “unacceptable” concentration of Russian forces on the Ukrainian border and in Russia-annexed Crimea.
The Kremlin increasingly says that the West and NATO are getting dangerously close to Russia’s borders.
Moscow made wide-ranging security demands to the West last week – for example, asking NATO not to accept new members, and the United States telling them not to set up new bases in former Soviet republics.
Truss stressed that “NATO is a defensive alliance” and praised Ukraine for its “commendable restraint despite Russian provocations and aggression.”
Truss added that any invasion of Ukraine would strike “force, including sanctions, with our allies.”
Her statement followed Russian President Vladimir Putin’s statement at a year-end news conference on Thursday, in which he said he saw Washington’s desire to discuss Russia’s security proposals as something “positive.”
Putin added that Washington was ready to hold talks in Geneva next year.
The British minister said that Russia can only resolve the issue through dialogue. “I welcome the fact that Russia is ready to start talks in January,” she added.
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