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US official says Russian troops could transfer into pro-Moscow areas of Ukraine in coming hours


The US remains to be preparations for a wider potential offensive that features loading amphibious ships and gear for airborne models.

Putin signed the decrees recognizing the Donetsk People’s Republic and the Luhansk People’s Republic in a ceremony held on state tv earlier on Monday.

A senior US administration official mentioned Russian troops have been persevering with to organize for an invasion of Ukraine, however that diplomacy would proceed “until the tanks are rolled out”.

“Russian troops continue to move closer to the border,” the official mentioned, including that they’re planning an offensive “at any time”.

Putin recognizes separate regions in eastern Ukraine, marking sharp escalation in crisis

The UN Security Council is anticipated to convene an pressing assembly at 9 p.m. ET Monday at Ukraine’s request, two UN diplomats advised CNN. The assembly can be an open session the place all member states together with Russia and the US are anticipated to make statements.

US Ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield mentioned, “We support Ukraine’s call for an urgent meeting of the United Nations Security Council. The Security Council must demand that Russia retain the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, a UN member state.” Respect it.”

Still, the White House-announced sanctions targeting specific regions were so far from the disastrous consequences for Russia that Biden and US officials have warned that if Russia does invade, it will be indicated that there will be more to the Moscow incident. Extensive measures are being taken. moves forward with military action to invade Ukrainian territory.

The US is refusing to specify whether so-called “peacekeeping” forces sent from Russia to eastern Ukraine would constitute another invasion of the country.

Instead, the official said that Russian forces have been operating in the Donbass region since Moscow’s first incursion into the country in 2014.

“The motion of Russian troops to the Donbass wouldn’t be a brand new step in itself. Russia has had forces within the Donbass area for the previous eight years,” the official said.

The official, speaking to reporters on condition of anonymity, said the US would monitor Russian activities on the ground, but declined to say whether the entry of troops has promised a larger package of sanctions.

“We will observe and assess what motion Russia really takes and reply accordingly,” the official said.

Biden’s executive order would also allow the US to impose sanctions on anyone working in those areas. And the White House said it would “quickly announce extra measures associated to right this moment’s gross violation of Russia’s worldwide commitments.”

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki wrote in a statement: “To be clear: these measures are separate and can be along with the fast and critical financial measures that we’re formulating in coordination with allies and companions, Russia on Ukraine.” and attack.”

Secretary of State Antony Blinken indicated that extra motion was coming and tweeted That “the recognition of the Kremlin as an ‘independent’ to the so-called ‘Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republic’ requires a prompt and firm response, and we will take appropriate steps in coordination with the partners.”

The indisputable fact that Russian troops are working extra brazenly in jap Ukraine, in keeping with the official, may change the US calculations.

“There have been Russian troops in the Donbass for eight years now. And, you know, Russia has denied it. Now, Russia looks like it’s going to openly act in that area and we’ll respond accordingly.” are going to present,” the officer mentioned.

The official mentioned the US would take extra motion on Tuesday to reply to Russia’s recognition of particular person territories.

America, Europe condemn Putin’s actions

The US response adopted a prolonged speech by Putin on Monday, wherein he attacked each Ukraine and the West earlier than signing decrees recognizing two controversial separatist-held areas. Putin’s announcement follows varied Russian claims of provocation over the previous a number of days, which the US and Ukraine say Moscow is utilizing false-flag operations to attempt to construct a justification for the struggle.

Western officers concern Monday’s transfer is a harbinger of a full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine. The US and different NATO nations have warned they’re making ready to impose harder sanctions if Moscow invades Ukraine, which might transcend the measures introduced by the White House on Monday.

NATO and European officers additionally condemned Putin’s actions in statements. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg mentioned the transfer “further undermines” Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

“I condemn Russia’s decision to recognize the self-proclaimed ‘Donetsk People’s Republic’ and the ‘Luhansk People’s Republic’,” he mentioned. “It further undermines Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, erodes efforts toward conflict resolution, and violates the Minsk Agreements, to which Russia is a party.”

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson mentioned on Monday that Putin’s recognition of separatist territories was an “outrageous and a very dark sign”. UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss mentioned on Twitter that Britain plans to announce new sanctions on Russia on Tuesday.

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky delivered an deal with on Monday night after Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba urged the UN Security Council to carry an pressing assembly.

Biden spoke to international leaders

Biden consulted with Zelensky on a name Monday afternoon, and he later spoke with French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

According to sources aware of the talks, US officers have held personal talks with Zelensky about transferring to Lviv, a metropolis greater than 300 miles west of the capital Kiev, ought to a transfer develop into mandatory as Russia continues to maneuver ahead.

The White House has publicly acknowledged that Zelensky’s whereabouts are finally a call for him.

Blinken introduced on Monday night that “for security reasons” State Department employees in Lviv would “spend the night” in Poland.

“Our personnel will return regularly to continue their diplomatic work in Ukraine and to provide emergency consular services,” he mentioned. “They will continue to support the Ukrainian people and the Ukrainian government, coordinating on diplomatic efforts.”

While Putin held a nationwide safety assembly on Monday forward of his speech, Biden was holding talks with high US officers on the White House. Blinken, Joint Chiefs Chairman General Mark Milley and CIA Director Bill Burns arrived on the White House on Monday, a US vacation. Vice President Kamala Harris, who returned from the Munich Security Conference on Sunday night, was additionally on the White House.

Milley additionally spoke together with his Ukrainian counterpart, Lieutenant General Valery Zaluzny, shortly after Putin acknowledged unbiased territories in jap Ukraine on Monday, in keeping with a spokesman for the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The two final spoke final week and have been in common communication as Russian forces have gathered on Ukraine’s borders and start to attract nearer.

Why the Donbass is at the center of the Ukraine crisis

Overnight, US officers downplayed the prospects of a French-proposed summit between Biden and Putin, suggesting that the prospects of a Russian invasion of Ukraine made such a gathering extremely unlikely. He mentioned no work had been carried out on the timing, format or venue for such a summit.

On Monday night, the senior administration official mentioned such a summit was unlikely, following Putin’s order, in addition to intelligence and alerts on the grounds that Russia may take army motion in Ukraine.

Speaking on a US tv morning present, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan warned that Russia may put together for an much more brutal battle than some initially anticipated.

“We consider that any army operation of this dimension, scope and magnitude that we consider the Russians are planning could be extraordinarily violent. It would price the lives of Ukrainians and Russians, civilians and army personnel alike. But we even have intelligence to recommend that there could be a fair larger type of brutality as a result of it will not simply be some typical struggle between two armies: it will be a struggle waged by Russia on the individuals of Ukraine, to suppress them. To crush them, to hurt them,” Sullivan said during a Monday appearance on NBC’s “Today Show.”

Sullivan said on ABC that “all indicators seem like President Putin and the Russians are continuing with plans to hold out a serious army offensive of Ukraine,” clarifying that the attack could start at any time and The move towards the attack was underway.

This title and story have been updated with additional development.

CNN’s DJ Judd, Kylie Atwood, Jennifer Hansler, Oren Lieberman, Kylie Atwood, Sharon Braithwaite and James Frater, Caitlan Collins and Natasha Bertrand contributed to this report.


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