Russia dismisses US concerns about buildup near Ukraine

Russia on Monday dismissed the United States’ concerns about its military buildup near Ukraine and instead alleged that Ukraine had aggressive intentions.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Monday that concerns about a possible invasion may “camouflage aggressive intentions in Kyiv to try to solve the problem of the southeast by force,” The Associated Press reported

Peskov said that Russia was concerned about the U.S. and other NATO countries providing Ukraine with weapons.

ADVERTISEMENT

“The number of provocations has been growing, and those provocations have been conducted using the weapons that NATO countries sent to Ukraine,” Peskov told reporters, according to the AP. “We are watching it with a grave concern.”

Russia has repeatedly denied that it wants to invade Ukraine as the U.S. and other countries raise alarm about Moscow amassing troops near the border.

The comment comes a day after Bloomberg reported that the U.S. has shared intelligence with NATO allies that shows Russia preparing to push into Ukraine from multiple locations with a buildup of troops and artillery near the border.

Earlier this month, Secretary of State Antony BlinkenAntony BlinkenBiden tries to tamp down tensions with Putin call Overnight Defense & National Security — Lawmakers clinch deal on defense bill Biden's 'Democracy Summit' meets the African paradox MORE warned that Russia may “make the serious mistake” of crossing into Ukraine while “claiming — falsely — that it was provoked.”

In a rare statement on Monday, the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) said that reports of Russia’s concentration of troops at the border with Ukraine was false, according to Russian news agency TASS.

The SVR instead accused the State Department of using “diplomatic channels to disseminate among its allies and partners absolutely false information about the concentration of forces in Russia for the military invasion of Ukraine,” TASS reported.

“The United States and its allies continue to pump up weapons to Ukraine, push it toward using such weapons, including unmanned aerial vehicles for the purposes of military provocations,” TASS said. 

The Hill has reached out to the State Department for a response to the SVR’s statement.