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31 March, 2023
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Russia announces end to exercises in Crimea, withdrawal of troops

Yesterday, Tuesday, Russia announced its first withdrawal of troops from the Ukrainian border

Kathimerini Greece Newsroom

Russia has announced the end of military exercises in Crimea and the withdrawal of troops from the region.

According to Moscow, the troops are returning to their bases. Yesterday, Tuesday, Russia announced the first withdrawal of troops from the border with Ukraine.

Russian state television broadcasted images of military units crossing the Crimean bridge.

Ukrainian Minister Defense: Nothing new in terms of threat status

Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksy Rezinov, meanwhile, said the assessment of the threat situation was "unexpected" and consistent with previous remarks.

In a televised statement, he said that the Ukrainian armed forces would continue a nationwide exercise.

At the same time, Belarus has assured Kyiv that there is no territorial threat from its territory.

New communication Biden - Macron

The presidents of the USA and France had a new telephone conversation on Tuesday about the Ukrainian crisis, as announced by the White House. Joe Biden and Emanuel Macron discussed their recent contacts with the presidents of Russia and Ukraine and reaffirmed their support for a diplomatic solution to the crisis.

According to the White House, the two leaders discussed the current diplomatic and deterrent efforts in close cooperation with NATO allies in response to the gathering of Russian military forces near the border with Ukraine.

They also stressed their readiness to impose serious consequences and strengthen defenses on NATO's east wing.

It is worth noting that, as White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki put it, the Biden government could impose sanctions on Russia even if President Putin decides not to invade Ukraine.

Biden Discourse

"We are ready to respond decisively to a Russian attack, which remains very likely," US President Joe Biden said in a speech on the Ukraine crisis.

"Such an attack would have no reason or purpose," he said, adding that at the moment the United States could not confirm that some Russian units had returned to their bases.

"The United States is ready, no matter what happens. We are ready to engage in diplomacy with Russia and our allies and partners to improve stability and security in Europe as a whole. And we are ready to respond decisively to a Russian attack on Ukraine, which is still very likely. That was our approach and it remains, "he said.

Biden reiterated that both the United States and its allies are ready to impose severe sanctions and export controls if Russia invades.

He assured the Russian people that "we are not your enemy", saying "I do not think you want a bloody, destructive war against Ukraine". He stressed that the United States and NATO are not a threat to Russia, noting that there are realistic ways to meet the security guarantees demanded by Moscow. He also assured that neither NATO nor the United States has missiles in Ukraine, nor plans to deploy missiles there. "Diplomacy should have every chance to succeed," he said.

Cyprus  |  Ukraine  |  diplomacy

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