by Stefan Bos, Worthy News Correspondent
Moscow-backed separatists have been fighting Ukrainian government troops there since 2014 in a war that has killed more than 14,000 people.
With nearly 100,000 Russian troops massing near Ukraine’s borders, the U.S. and its allies fear the situation could escalate. This week’s lengthy phone call between President Biden and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin did little to ease tensions.
Putin indirectly accused the U.S.-backed Ukrainian government of fueling Russophobia, which was the first step towards genocide. “We see and know what is happening in Donbas,” he said, referring to the conflict zone. “It certainly looks like genocide.”
Amid diplomatic and military saber-rattling, Biden briefed Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in a one-and-a-half-hour phone call on his conversation with Putin two days ago.
The two leaders discussed “the security situation around Ukraine and the prospects of activating the peace settlement,” a Ukrainian presidential statement said.
Zelensky expressed concerns with a significant military buildup also reported in Crimea, the Black Sea peninsula that Russia seized and then annexed from Ukraine in 2014.
Biden also spoke to leaders of member states of the U.S.-led NATO military alliance.
Biden has made clear that putting American troops on the ground in Ukraine in the event of a Russian invasion is “not on the table.”
Yet, Biden warned of “severe” consequences if Russia did invade.
So far, however, sanctions against Russia haven’t stopped Putin from increasing Russia’s footprint in the region.
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