The latest on the Ukraine crisis: U.S. secretary of state calls for countries to unite against Russia
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken recently visited Ukraine in effort to defuse tensions
The ongoing Ukraine crisis took another turn as U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrived in the country to defuse ongoing tension between Russia and Ukraine.
What happened: Blinken arrived in Kyiv, Ukraine, Wednesday in a move aimed to defuse the tension between Moscow and Ukraine, according to BBC News.
- He warned that Russia could attack Ukraine on “very short notice.”
- “I strongly, strongly hope that we can keep this on a diplomatic and peaceful path, but ultimately, that’s going to be President Putin’s decision,” he said.
Quotes: Blinken urged western nations Wednesday to unite against Russia’s aggression, according to The Associated Press.
- “The Ukrainian people chose a democratic and European path in 1991. They took to the Maidan to defend that choice in 2013, and unfortunately ever since you have faced relentless aggression from Moscow,” Blinken said.
- “Our strength depends on preserving our unity and that includes unity within Ukraine,” he said to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. “I think one of Moscow’s long-standing goals has been to try to sow divisions between and within our countries and quite simply, we cannot and will not let them do that.”
State of play: Russia has amassed troops near Ukraine’s borders, forcing eyes across the country and region to watch what’s unfolding.
- Moscow has planned joint military drills in Belarus.
- The Biden administration said it will add an additional $200 million in defensive military aid to Ukraine, per the AP.
- Russia’s ruble has slumped in value as investors predict the country will face economic sanctions over what’s happening with Ukraine, per Axios.
What’s next: Blinken will finish his visit with Ukraine before he moves on to Berlin and Geneva.
The other side: Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said Wednesday that the U.S could not force Russia to move troops away from the Ukraine border, according to BBC News.
- “They are on our territory and we won’t be making any changes to their movement because of external pressure,” he said.