Russia moves EU member state Ireland rattling naval exercises

Moscow (AP) —Russia off Irish after Dublin expressed concern in a tense dispute with the West over the expansion of the NATO alliance and feared Russia was preparing to invade Ukraine. He said he would relocate naval exercises.

The exercise, February 3-8, was held in the exclusive economic zone of Ireland, 240 km (150 miles) from southwestern Ireland. Ireland is a member of the European Union of 27 countries, but not NATO.

Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney opposed the wargame this week, saying: The fact that they choose to do it off the coast of Ireland at the western border of the EU is simply unwelcome in our view. “

On Saturday, the Russian embassy in Ireland posted a letter from Ambassador Yuri Firatov on Facebook, stating that the exercises would be moved out of the Irish economic zone “for the purpose of not interfering with fishing activities.”

This decision led to heightened tensions over Russia’s rallying an estimated 100,000 troops near the Ukrainian border and NATO weapons near the Russian border, never allowing NATO to join the Ukrainian alliance. It was a rare concession in the request to stop the deployment of Ukraine and promise to roll it back. That army from Eastern Europe.

The United States and NATO formally rejected these requests this week, but Washington has outlined controversial areas and provided hope that there may be ways to avoid the war.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has made no public statement about the Western response. Foreign Minister Sergeĭ Viklov said Russia did not want a war, but said it was unlikely that an agreement would be reached.

U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said on Friday that Putin would take “forced or provocative political acts” to occupy Ukrainian cities and “significant territories” or to approve secession territories within Ukraine. He said he could use any part of his power to carry out.

The two territories of eastern Ukraine have been under the control of Russian-backed rebels since 2014 after Russia annexed the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine.

Russian lawmakers are encouraging residents of these parts of Ukraine to join the Russian army. This shows that Moscow is trying to integrate these areas as much as possible. Viktor Vodolatsky said on Saturday that residents of rebel-controlled areas of eastern Ukraine are afraid of attacks by Ukrainian troops, and those with Russian passports are welcomed by Russian troops.

“If Russian citizens living in (territory) want to join the Russian army, the Rostov Regional Military Commission will register and draft them,” said Vodolatsky, vice chairman of the Parliamentary Commission on Relationships with Neighbors. I told the company Tass.

Russia has granted passports to more than 500,000 people in rebel-controlled areas. Vodolatsky said recruits would serve in Russia, leaving the option for them to join future invading forces.

A senior official in the Joe Biden administration said the United States welcomed Viklov’s comment that Russia did not want war. We need to see Russia pulling some of the troops they deployed away from the Ukrainian border and taking other de-escalation measures. He wasn’t allowed to speak publicly, so the official spoke on condition of anonymity.

Mr Viklov said the United States suggested that both sides could discuss restrictions on the deployment of intermediate-range missiles, restrictions on military exercises, and rules to prevent accidents between warships and aircraft. He suggested that the Russians discuss those issues many years ago, but Washington and his allies never took them up.

He also said that these issues were secondary to Russia’s main concerns about NATO. He said the international agreement would send a letter to the western counterparts asking them to explain that the security of one country should not be sacrificed to another and that it does not respect its pledge. ..

Washington has warned of catastrophic sanctions if Moscow invades Ukraine, including penalties for Russia’s top executives and key economic sectors. Mr Viklov said Moscow warned Washington that sanctions would cut off the relationship altogether.

Meanwhile, NATO said it is strengthening deterrence in the Baltic region.

Russia has begun military training involving motorized infantry and artillery units in southwestern Russia, fighter aircraft in Kaliningrad in the Baltic Sea, and dozens of warships in the Black Sea and the Arctic. Russian troops are also in Belarus for joint training, raising Western concerns that Moscow could attack Ukraine from the north from Belarus. The capital of Ukraine is only 75 km (46 miles) from the border with Belarus.