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Kremlin threatens conflict with NATO if members send troops to fight for Ukraine

by

Daily Caller News Foundation

The Kremlin warned Tuesday that Russia would go into conflict with the NATO alliance if member nations sent troops to Russia to fight on Ukraine’s behalf, according to The Moscow Times.

Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico said Monday that several EU and NATO members are considering sending troops inside Ukraine, while French President Emmanuel Macron said the same day that “nothing can be ruled out” in ensuring a Kyiv victory over Russia, according to Politico and The Associated Press. The Kremlin responded that such a decision would result in a military confrontation between Russia and NATO, the Times reported.

“This is absolutely not in the interests of these countries, they should be aware of this,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters in response to Macron’s statement, according to the Times. “The very fact of discussing the possibility of sending certain contingents to Ukraine from NATO countries is a very important new element.”

Peskov added that if soldiers were sent to Ukraine to fight on Kyiv’s behalf, “we need to speak not about a possibility but of the inevitability” of conflict, according to the Times.

“And these countries need… to ask themselves if [confrontation] is in their interests and, mainly, if it’s in the interests of the citizens,” he continued.

Several NATO members quickly ruled out sending troops to Ukraine following Macron’s comments, including Britain, Germany, Spain and Poland, according to Reuters. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg also told the AP Tuesday that “there are no plans for NATO combat troops on the ground in Ukraine.”

If troops from one of the 32 NATO members were deployed to Ukraine to fight against Russia, it may end up escalating the conflict into a multi-nation war. The Washington Treaty states that if one NATO member is attacked, it “shall be considered an attack against them all” and a collective military defensive would be initiated.

Ukraine is not currently a NATO member, though Kyiv continues to seek membership.

President Joe Biden raised the specter of a global war in December after claiming that should Russia conquer Ukraine and attack a neighboring NATO ally, “then we’ll have something that we don’t seek and that we don’t have today: American troops fighting Russian troops.” Biden made these remarks during an urgent call for increased U.S. military aid to Ukraine, a prospect currently being negotiated in Congress.

Some critics fear that Ukraine cannot militarily overtake Russia. Even with $73 billion in aid from the U.S. alone, Kyiv’s counteroffensive has largely stalled out as an estimated tens of thousands Ukrainian soldiers have died on the frontlines.

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Republished with permission from Daily Caller News Foundation

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