NATO Minister Jens Stoltenberg put the Rapid Reaction Force on alert to defend the Western Allies.
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The Secretary-General of NATO said, Tuesday, February 22, that he expects a large-scale attack from Russia in Ukraine. “Everything indicates that Russia is planning a large-scale attack in Ukraine” After sending troops to the pro-Russian separatist regions of Donbass in the east of the country, Jens Stoltenberg said after an extraordinary meeting of the NATO-Ukraine Committee at the alliance’s headquarters in Brussels.
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“We do not know whether Russia recognized the Donetsk and Luhansk regions or only the parts occupied by separatists. It is not clear”He added, while speaking just before Vladimir Putin announced the recognition of the separatists’ sovereignty over all Lugansk and Donetsk regions.
“Russia has promised to withdraw its forces and instead concentrate more forces in a combat formation ready to attack.”He said. “Other forces are in the Donbass, in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions, and this aggravates the situation”he added. To that must be added the threatening rhetoric of Vladimir Putin.”he insisted. “NATO is ready to defend allies. The rapid reaction force is on alert, but not deployed”announced.
This force has 40,000 troops and has a Very High Readiness Combined Operations Force (VJTF) of 8,000 troops, including 7,000 French, with an air component currently under French command.
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