Kiev says it gained’t assault pro-Russian separatists

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Ukraine mentioned on Friday it might not launch an offensive in opposition to pro-Russia separatists controlling two areas within the east, as fears develop of a significant escalation in a long-running battle.

The assertion got here after combating between the Ukrainian military and separatists intensified in current weeks and Russia massed troops on the border.

“The liberation of the briefly occupied territories by power will inevitably result in the dying of a lot of civilians and casualties among the many army, which is unacceptable for Ukraine,” Ruslan Khomchak, chief of the final employees of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, mentioned in an announcement.

He accused Moscow of utilizing “intimidation and blackmail by army power” to exacerbate the scenario.

“Ukraine is supported by all the civilised world. We aren’t alone within the face of the enemy,” Khomchak added.

The White Home mentioned Thursday the variety of Russian troops on the border with Ukraine was now better “than at any time since 2014”, when struggle in jap Ukraine first broke out after Russia annexed the Crimean peninsula.

Amid the intensifying combating, Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky on Thursday visited the jap frontline, the place he spent the evening.

“Our nation’s destiny is decided right here,” Zelensky mentioned on Fb, whereas photographs launched by his workplace confirmed him within the trenches clad in a helmet and bulletproof vest, shaking palms with troopers.

Zelensky, who has urged NATO to hurry up his nation’s membership into the alliance to assist Ukraine, mentioned Thursday he had visited positions the place Ukrainian troops have been killed and wounded in current weeks.

He mentioned 26 Ukrainian troopers had been killed for the reason that begin of the 12 months, in comparison with 50 in all of 2020.

The battle in Ukraine’s primarily Russian-speaking east has claimed greater than 13,000 lives since 2014.

(AFP)

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