Wed. Jan 26th, 2022

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov says Moscow has “run out” of patience after diplomatic talks did not yield a breakthrough.

Russia has repeated its strong question that NATO will not expand eastward, despite its rejection by the military alliance amid a Russian troop build-up near Ukraine.

It added on Friday that it would not wait indefinitely for the Western response.

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov described Moscow’s demands that NATO not expand its powers or deploy to Ukraine and other former Soviet countries as essential to the progress of diplomatic efforts to defuse rising tensions over Ukraine. .

He argued that the deployment of NATO forces and weapons near Russia’s borders posed a security challenge that needed to be addressed immediately.

“We have no more patience,” Lavrov said at a news conference. “The West has been driven by hubris and has exacerbated tensions contrary to its commitments and common sense.”

Lavrov said Russia expects Washington and NATO to provide a written response to its demands next week.

In the midst of the tensions, Ukraine underwent a massive cyber attack on Friday, which hit websites of several government agencies.

This week’s negotiations in Geneva and a related NATO-Russia meeting was held in Brussels amid a significant Russian troop build-up near Ukraine that the West fears could be a prelude to an invasion.

Russia, which annexed Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula in 2014, denied plans to attack its neighbor, but warned the West that NATO’s enlargement to Ukraine and other former Soviet nations was a “red line”. is what should not be crossed.

Washington and its allies definitely rejected Moscow’s security call guarantees NATO’s expansion, but Russia and the West have agreed to open the door to possible further talks on arms control and confidence-building measures aimed at reducing the potential for hostilities.

The negotiations took place when an estimated 100,000 Russian soldiers were packed with tanks and other heavy weapons near Ukraine’s eastern border.

The United States and its allies have urged Russia to de-escalate by withdrawing troops to its permanent bases, but Moscow has rejected the claim, saying it is free to deploy forces on its territory wherever it deems it necessary.

Russia’s Defense Ministry said on Friday that troops stationed in eastern Siberia and the Far East region had been scrambled for movement across the country as part of rapid exercises to increase their “readiness to carry out their duties after redeployment”. large distance “to check.

The ministry noted that “special attention will be paid to the assessment of the country’s transport infrastructure to ensure the movement of troops”, adding that the troops will carry out exercises involving the firing of live ammunition after the redeployment.

Russia seized the Crimean peninsula following the removal of Ukraine’s Moscow – friendly leader and in 2014 also threw its weight behind a separatist armed uprising in eastern Ukraine. More than 14,000 people have been killed in nearly eight years of fighting between Russia-backed rebels and Ukrainian forces.

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