The US Secretary of State warns of a Russian invasion of Ukraine. Spain transfers fighter jets to Bulgaria. The news ticker.
- Ukraine crisis: Russia* holds several military exercises in the vicinity of Ukraine.
- USA*: US President Joe Biden* Warns US nationals and directs strong language towards Wladimir Putin*.
- Germany and Chancellor Olaf Scholz* (SPD*) are still looking for a diplomatic solution. All information in our news ticker.
+++ 3.43 p.m.: In view of the increasing tensions due to the Russian troop deployment on the borders with Ukraine, NATO member Spain relocated four fighter jets to Bulgaria on Friday (February 11, 2022). The Spanish Air Force announced that 130 soldiers as ground personnel had already arrived at the Graf Ignatievo air force base in NATO member Bulgaria in the past few days.
The Eurofighter aircraft are to increase airspace surveillance over the Black Sea and intercept Russian aircraft by the end of March, reports the newspaper La Vanguardia. The four fighter jets would then be relocated to the Baltic States.
US on Ukraine conflict: “Invasion could start at any time”
+++ 11.31 a.m.: US Secretary of State Antony Blinken warns of an escalation in the Ukraine conflict. According to him, a Russian invasion of Ukraine could begin at any time. He continues to see very worrying signs of escalation from Russia, Blinken said at a press conference in Melbourne, Australia. This also includes the arrival of new armed forces at the Ukrainian border.
“As stated previously, we are in a window where an invasion could begin anytime.” This could also happen during the Olympic Winter Games 2022* which are currently taking place in China*. The US State Department has already urged US citizens to leave Ukraine immediately.
+++ 10.20 a.m.: Before his trips to Kiev and Moscow early next week, Chancellor Olaf Scholz stressed that Russia would have to pay a high price if Ukraine were to be attacked. It is currently about preventing a war in Europe, he says in a speech in the Federal Council. “Everything serves to ensure that we achieve peace in Europe,” he adds, also with a view to the Normandy meeting on Thursday evening in Berlin. It is also important to strengthen Europe.
Ukraine conflict: Biden toughens tone on Russia
First report from Friday, February 11, 2022, 8:17 a.m.: Washington – US President Joe Biden has sharpened the tone again towards Russia in the Ukraine conflict. In a pre-recorded interview with the US broadcaster NBC, published on Thursday (February 11, 2022), Biden called on US citizens in Ukraine to leave the country “now”. Meanwhile, Russia and Belarus launched military maneuvers near the Ukrainian border on Thursday.
US President Joe Biden on Russia: “One of the largest armies in the world”
“We are dealing with one of the largest armies in the world here,” Biden said in the interview, referring to the Russian troop accumulation on the border with eastern Ukraine. “It’s a very different situation and things could get crazy fast.”
Biden warned his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin against harming US citizens. He hopes that if Putin is “foolish enough” to invade Ukraine, he is “smart enough not to do anything that negatively impacts American citizens.”
Ukraine conflict: Biden does not want to send troops under any circumstances
However, Biden reiterated that under no circumstances would he send US troops to Ukraine, including to rescue US citizens in the event of a Russian invasion. This would start “a world war,” he said, reiterating, “If Americans and Russians start shooting at each other, we’re in a whole different world.”
Citizens from the USA should leave Ukraine because of the “unpredictable” situation
Biden’s statements represent a renewed escalation after weeks of shuttle diplomacy between Washington, Moscow, Kiev and various European capitals. In January, the US government recommended that its citizens leave Ukraine independently because of the “unpredictable” situation on the ground. At the time, she had also ordered the departure of the relatives of US diplomats in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev and warned her citizens against traveling to Russia.
Russia and Ukraine conflict: Joe Biden calls on US citizens to leave Ukraine
According to Western sources, Russia has massed more than 100,000 soldiers on the border with Ukraine in recent months. In Ukraine, as in the West, this is fueling fears of a possible large-scale attack by Russia on the neighboring country. Russia rejects any plans of attack. At the same time, the Kremlin says it feels threatened by NATO.
According to the US Defense Department, US Chief of Staff Mark Milley called his Belarusian counterpart Viktor Gulevich on Thursday to reduce the risk of “misjudgments” amid military maneuvers in the Brest region, near the Ukrainian border. According to the US, around 30,000 Soldiers transferred from Russia to Belarus and several warships sent to the Black Sea.*
Ukraine conflict: Ukraine accuses Russia of exerting “psychological pressure”.
According to Russian statements, the exercise is about preparing the armed forces to repel “external aggression”. However, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy accused Moscow of exerting “psychological pressure” on his country.
Russia had also sent six warships to naval exercises in the Black Sea and the neighboring Sea of Azov. Kiev condemned the presence of these ships as an “unprecedented” attempt to cut off Ukraine from both seas.
US: US military ground crew landed in UK
Meanwhile, the US military said B-52 long-range bombers, along with ground personnel, were stationed at Britain’s Fairfield Air Force Base in Great Britain* had landed. They should therefore take part in a “long” planned NATO exercise. In addition, according to information on Thursday, four destroyers were sent last month to NATO exercises in the area covered by the US Sixth Fleet, which also includes the Mediterranean Sea. (df, afp) *fr.de is an offer from IPPEN.MEDIA.
List of rubrics: © Thomas Wiegold/Imago
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