Ukraine Seeks More Western Arms Amid Russia Border Activity

The conflict between Ukraine and Russia has claimed thousands of lives.

Ukraine said on Thursday it was seeking more military aid from its Western allies after they voiced concerns over Russian troop movements along the Ukrainian border.

The Ukrainian army has been locked in a simmering conflict with pro-Russia separatists in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions that erupted after Moscow annexed Crimea in 2014.

Ukraine and its Western allies accuse Russia of sending troops and arms across the borders — claims Moscow denies.

Social media videos have in recent days shown Russia moving troops, tanks, and missiles towards the Ukrainian border, raising concerns over an escalation in the conflict.

“Russia’s aggressiveness, both diplomatic and military, increased considerably in recent weeks”, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said.

“Ukraine is already actively consolidating partners in countering hybrid threats,” he told reporters.

The minister said that after his visits to Washington and Brussels in recent days, “work is underway to develop a comprehensive package of containment of Russia.”

Kuleba said that this package means “political support” for Ukraine from its Western partners, “increased diplomatic and sanctions pressure” on Russia, and agreements “on the supply of additional defense weapons for our army”.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken last week voiced fresh concern about Russian troop movements and warned Moscow against any possible invasion.

The European Union said earlier that it was also alarmed by Russian military activities close to Ukraine’s border.

After an uptick in violence at the beginning of the year, Russia massed around 100,000 troops on Ukraine’s borders in the spring, raising fears of a major escalation in the conflict.

Russia later announced a pullback but both Ukraine and its ally the United States said at the time the withdrawal was limited.

The conflict has claimed more than 13,000 lives.

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