WASHINGTON (AFP) Secretary of State Antony Blinken spoke with French Overseas Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian about “regarding” Russian army exercise going down “in and close to Ukraine,” a US official mentioned late Sunday (Nov 14).
The 2 prime diplomats addressed “stories of regarding Russian army exercise in and close to Ukraine and their continued ironclad dedication to Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity,” State Division spokesman Ned Worth mentioned in a press release.
Mr Blinken and Mr Le Drian spoke on Saturday, and likewise mentioned “joint efforts to handle Iran’s nuclear programme,” Mr Worth mentioned.
Western allies have voiced mounting alarm over latest Russian troop actions close to the nation’s border with Ukraine.
The Ukrainian military has been locked in a simmering battle with Kremlin-backed separatists within the Donetsk and Lugansk areas that erupted after Russia annexed the Crimean peninsula in 2014.
Kiev mentioned two Ukrainian troopers had been killed Friday by an explosive system within the nation’s separatist east, whereas latest social media movies present Russia shifting troops, tanks and missiles in direction of the Ukrainian border.
After an uptick in violence initially of the 12 months, Russia amassed round 100,000 troops on Ukraine’s borders within the spring, elevating fears of a significant escalation within the battle.
Russia later introduced a pullback however each Ukraine and its ally the US mentioned on the time that the withdrawal was restricted.
The battle has claimed greater than 13,000 lives.
Ukraine and its Western allies accuse Russia of sending troops and arms throughout the border. Moscow has denied these claims.