The Russian Federation considers the US and NATO demands for “certain measures” in its territory to be inappropriate and sees no point in providing additional guarantees of non-aggression against Ukraine, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Sergey Ryabkov told Interfax news agency in an interview.
According to him, Russia is not being asked for any additional security guarantees.
“We provided all the relevant guarantees when the Budapest Memorandum was signed in 1994,” the diplomat said.
He believes that Ukraine “with the connivance of Western patrons … distorts the meaning” of the Budapest Memorandum.
“The Budapest Memorandum concerns the guarantees of Ukraine’s security as a non-nuclear state within the meaning of the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons. And from this point of view, all guarantees are provided and observed,” he said.
Earlier, the Russian Federation set out demands for security guarantees, which were submitted to the United States and NATO. In particular, Russian demands concern non-expansion of the bloc to the east, including Ukraine’s non-accession to the North Atlantic Alliance.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg already rejected Russia’s demand related to Ukraine’s membership. He said no one but Ukraine could decide whether it wanted to be a member of the Alliance, despite Russia’s objections.
Meanwhile, the media, citing U.S. intelligence, reported that Russia has already deployed more than 50 battalion tactical groups on the border with Ukraine, and six more are upcoming.
These groups, which may include 900 personnel each, are diversified self-sufficient combat units with artillery, anti-tank systems, reconnaissance, and engineering capabilities. Such groups played a leading role in Russia’s aggression against Ukraine in 2014.
At the same time, Russia began to use commercial air and rail routes to build up and support its troops.
The main source of amassed Russia’s military power is observed in the 6th Army, the 1st Army in Voronezh, the 41st Army in Yelnya, and the 58th and 49th Armies in Crimea. The recruitment of reservists may be the next step of the Russian Federation.
According to a recent survey conducted by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology, 33.3% of Ukrainians surveyed are ready to take up armed resistance in case of armed intervention by Russia, and another 21.7% are willing to resist by participating in civil resistance rallies.