Ukraine’s course to NATO membership could lead to a large-scale military conflict in Europe, said Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in an interview with the Bosnian newspaper Oslobodjenje.
According to Lavrov, the degree of confrontation that has been reached is connected with how American colleagues “patronize” their Ukrainian protégés.
“The policy of drawing Kyiv into NATO and the possibility of strike missile systems appearing near our borders creates unacceptable threats to Russia’s security, provoking serious military risks for all parties involved, up to a large-scale conflict in Europe,” Lavrov warned.
According to Lavrov, Ukraine became the main topic of negotiations between Presidents Vladimir Putin and Joe Biden on December 7. Putin “using specific examples illustrated Kyiv’s destructive course” aimed at dismantling the Minsk agreements and expressed serious concern about Ukraine’s provocative actions against the Donbas, the Russian Foreign Minister said.
According to US data, Russia continues to amass its forces near the Ukrainian border with 122,000 soldiers deployed at a distance of 200 kilometers from Ukraine compared to 100,000 a week earlier, a senior Official of the Biden administration told Bloomberg.
He stressed that the de-escalation of tensions is a condition for the beginning of negotiations on security guarantees, which Russia seeks.
Moscow published proposed agreements with the United States and NATO, in which it demanded to return the infrastructure of the alliance to the 1997 borders and abandon the decisions on the inclusion of Georgia and Ukraine in NATO.