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Sullivan on Russian invasion of Ukraine: ‘We’ve seen scorched Earth warfare already’

Associated Press/Manuel Balce Ceneta

White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan on Sunday said the world has already seen Russia utilize “scorched Earth warfare” in its invasion of Ukraine when asked about reports that a new general has been appointed to lead Moscow’s efforts in the conflict.

Multiple outlets reported over the weekend that Gen. Aleksandr Dvornikov has been appointed to lead Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Before Dvornikov, there was no central commander overseeing Russia’s offensive on the ground, according to The New York Times.

Dvornikov was in charge of Russia’s brutal intervention in Syria.

Asked by moderator Margaret Brennan on CBS’s “Face the Nation” if Dvornikov’s appointment is a signal that the international community needs to expect “scorched Earth warfare,” Sullivan said it is “consistent” with how Russia has conducted its offensive.

“I think it’s actually just consistent with the way that Russia has conducted this war from the beginning,” Sullivan said.

“We’ve seen scorched Earth warfare already, we’ve seen atrocities and war crimes and mass killings and horrifying and shocking images from towns like Bucha, and the rocket attack on Kramatorsk. So I think this is an indication that we will see more of that,” he added.

Sullivan’s comments came days after a rocket attack struck a train station in the Ukrainian city of Kramatorsk, which was full of Ukrainian civilians attempting to evacuate the city. At least 52 people were killed and dozens more were wounded, according to The Associated Press.

The national security adviser also pointed to images that emerged from the Ukrainian city of Bucha, where dead bodies of civilians were shows strewn in the streets.

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