Tuesday, July 5, 2022

Russia warns European leaders against ‘pumping’ arms to Ukraine

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The four European leaders visiting Kiev should encourage Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to take a real look at the situation rather than further pumping Ukraine with weapons, the Kremlin said on Thursday.

“Promising weapons supplies will prolong the suffering of the people it will cause more damage to this country,’’ Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said.

The delivery of more modern and heavier weapons remained a key demand of Kiev as the leaders of Germany, France, Italy and Romania visited.

Russia had repeatedly warned Western countries against supplying more arms to the Ukrainian forces, and the Russian military reported on a daily basis that it was destroying Western weapons in Ukraine.

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Russian President Vladimir Putin had also warned French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz against increased arms supplies to Ukraine.

He said that it could lead to further destabilisation of the country.

The Kremlin said Putin made his comments during a three-way telephone call with the French and German leaders on Saturday in which he warned against the continued transfers of Western weapons to Ukraine.

He blamed the conflict’s disruption to global food supplies on Western sanctions.

Putin told Macron and Scholz that continuing arms supplies to Ukraine was “dangerous”, and he warned “of the risks of further destabilisation of the situation and aggravation of the humanitarian crisis,” the Kremlin said.

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During the 80-minute call, Macron and Scholz in return, urged an immediate cease-fire in Ukraine and a withdrawal of Russian troops from the country, according to the German chancellor’s spokesperson.

Western arms supply to Ukraine were posing a threat to European security, Russia says after warning any attempt to “interfere” in the country would be met with a swift response from Moscow.

“In itself, the tendency to pump weapons, including heavy weapons, to Ukraine and other countries are actions that threaten the security of the continent and provoke instability,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.

dpa/NAN

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