Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky responded to US President Joe Biden’s comments on “small-scale raids”.
Earlier, President Biden made remarks that could be interpreted as not being too high a level of sanctions from the United States and its allies if Russia carried out a “small” raid on Ukraine.
However, President Zelensky tweeted that “there are no small raids” and “there are no small casualties or small grief over the loss of a loved one.”
Russia has concentrated 100,000 troops on the Ukrainian border, but has denied plans to invade.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has repeatedly called on Western countries not to join Ukraine to NATO and to suspend defense alliance operations in Eastern Europe.
At a press conference on the 19th (local time), President Biden said that if Putin invaded Ukraine, he would pay “a grave and severe price.” .
“Russia will be held responsible for the invasion, and that will depend on their actions,” Biden said. will,” he said.
As President Biden’s remarks questioned the US strategy for responding to Russian military action, government officials were quick to clarify the US position.
U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blincoln said on the 20th that “our position has been clear throughout” and added that if Russia invades Ukraine in any form, the United States and its allies will take “a speedy, stringent and united response”.
President Biden said on the 20th that if Russian troops invaded Ukraine in any way, it would be an “invasion.”
Analysis: Anthony Jercher, North American Correspondent
Secretary Blincoln said the US position was “very clear” in Berlin, Germany on the 20th. He said there would be a “quick and severe response” if Russian forces invade Ukraine in any form.
But the night before, President Biden took a far more obscure stance, suggesting that sanctions could be different by distinguishing between large-scale and small-scale invasions.
This may have been the candid revelation of President Biden. Because he expected Putin to somehow get into Ukraine. However, this remark made the efforts of Secretary Blincoln to be overshadowed. The Minister has explained the current crisis through his overseas trip as a result of Russia’s harsh choice between diplomacy and conflict without an ambiguous middle ground.
In his speech in Berlin on the 20th, Secretary Blincoln raised a sense of crisis and seems to have attracted the attention of the allies in attendance. He said the situation was not a “dispute in remote areas” but a threat to international principles of sovereignty and self-determination. If Russia wants a new Cold War, the United States and its allies are ready, he said. His and President Biden’s remarks will leave uncertainties as the minister meets with the Russian foreign minister in Geneva, Switzerland on the 21st.
Secretary of State Blincoln made this remark after meeting with foreign ministers of major European countries in Germany. The meeting was aimed at coordinating Western strategies in preparation for the invasion of Ukraine. He plans to meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Geneva, Switzerland on the 21st.
Earlier, the Russian government warned that Biden’s remarks could further destabilize the situation.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said that any Russian invasion of Ukraine “will be a disaster for the world, of any size.”
What does Putin want?
Putin has long argued that the United States violated the 1990 NATO agreement not to expand eastward. “They tricked us,” he protested at a press conference last month.
Opinions are divided as to which promise Mikhail Gorbachev, who was leading the Soviet Union at the time, received. But Putin appears to be firmly convinced that an agreement has been reached.
Subsequently, several countries in Central and Eastern Europe that were part of or under the influence of the Soviet Union joined NATO. Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia, which joined at this time, border Russia.
Russia argues that NATO expansion and NATO forces and military equipment stationed in the border area threaten national security.
After the ouster of a pro-Russian president from Ukraine in 2014, Russia occupied and annexed Crimea in southern Ukraine. Since then, the Ukrainian army has been fighting a rebel with Russian support on the eastern Russian border.
Ukrainians are concerned that the conflict will rekindle and Russian troops will cross the border. The long-standing conflict in Ukraine has left 14,000 dead and at least 2 million displaced.