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Tensions in Ukraine: France advises against going there, nationals evacuated … update on the situation

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The situation continues to deteriorate in Ukraine, while the West fears a Russian military operation in this country. Several decisions have been taken, in particular by the United States and England, which evacuate their nationals, while France advises its citizens not to go to the country.

The United States announced on Sunday that it had ordered the evacuation of some of its nationals in Ukraine, a decision followed on Monday January 24 by the United Kingdom, while tension remains high between Moscow and the Western powers which fear a Russian military operation. in the country.

Washington ordered the evacuation of the families of its diplomatic personnel in Ukraine and authorized the voluntary departures of staff members from the United States Embassy in Kiev. The State Department also called on US citizens in Ukraine to consider leaving the country immediately.

Russian military action at ‘any time’

“Military action by Russia could occur at any time”, the US Embassy said in a statement. Authorities “will not be able to evacuate US citizens in such an event, so US citizens currently in Ukraine should prepare accordingly,” she added. For its part, the British Embassy in Ukraine announced on Monday that some of its staff members and their families were being evacuated from Kiev, citing a “growing threat from Russia”.

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On the side of the European Union (EU), the bloc’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell indicated on Monday that a departure of the families of European diplomats based in Ukraine was not envisaged for the moment.

He added that he was waiting for information from US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who is due to attend a meeting of European foreign ministers in Brussels on Monday. On its website, the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs for its part “formally” advises against traveling to the border areas of northern and eastern Ukraine and advises to postpone non-urgent trips to the country.

Towards the sending of American soldiers?

Tensions around Ukraine have escalated in recent months over Russia’s deployment of around 100,000 troops to the country’s borders, according to Kiev and Western countries, raising fears of another Russian invasion after that of Crimea in 2014 .

Moscow continues to deny any bellicose intentions while the West threatens to impose severe economic sanctions on Russia in the event of an invasion of Ukraine. Sunday, Britain has accused the Kremlin of seeking to install a pro-Russian leader in Ukraine, what the Russian Foreign Ministry called “disinformation”.

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Senior Biden administration officials say the US president has begun exploring options to bolster US military assets in the region.

According to the New York Times, Joe Biden plans to send between 1,000 and 5,000 troops to Eastern European countrieswithout excluding further reinforcement of the workforce in the event of renewed tensions.

A senior administration official declined to confirm those numbers on Sunday, but said: “We are developing plans and consulting with our allies to determine the options available to us”. The United States has provided military support to Ukraine but has so far refrained from sending troops there.

state of emergency

On Monday, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said that member countries of the alliance had placed their armies on high alert and decided to send reinforcements to Eastern Europe, including warships and combat aircraft.

Russia will “respond appropriately” if the United States deploys more troops to Eastern Europe and the Baltic states, Russian parliamentarian Andrei Kartapolov reacted on Monday, according to remarks reported by the Interfax news agency.

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