The United States and Russia clashed Monday at the United Nations Security Council over the crisis in Ukraine. The U.S. accused Russia of preparing to invade Ukraine by amassing over 100,000 troops on its border, but Russia rejected the charge, claiming it was the United States and NATO who were trying to push Russia into a war. This is Russia’s U.N. ambassador.
Vasily Nebenzya: “Our Western colleagues are talking about the need for deescalation; however, first and foremost, they themselves are whipping up tensions and rhetoric and are provoking escalation. The discussions about a threat of war is provocative in and of itself. You are almost calling for this. You want it to happen.”
Last week, President Biden placed 8,500 U.S. troops on high alert. The U.S. and NATO allies are also shipping weapons to Ukraine.
On the diplomatic front, U.S. Secretary of State Tony Blinken is set to speak with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov by phone today.
In Washington, U.S. senators are preparing to unveil a bill imposing what Senator Robert Menendez described as “the mother of all sanctions” targeting Putin, Russian banks and other entities. We’ll have more on the crisis over Ukraine after headlines.