NATO , US doubt Russian troop withdrawal

While news of Russia removing soldiers from Crimea appear to calm military tensions, the crisis is far from resolved due to Russia’s security concerns and NATO ‘s expansionist open-door strategy.

  • The unprecedented force mobilization on Ukraine’s three flanks, with combat planes, warships, and S400 missile defense systems, raised concerns of conflict.
  • To gain diplomatic influence in talks with the West, Russia increased military pressure surrounding Ukraine.
  • Hungarian, French, and German leaders recently visited Moscow. Their conversations with Russia paved the way for deescalation

De-escalation of Russian forces and NATO stance

  • Russia stated it was removing more forces from Ukraine, but NATO and the US say they are not convinced.
  • The Russian Defense Ministry released a video showing tanks, infantry fighting vehicles, and self-propelled artillery departing Crimea.
  • But the US says over 150,000 Russian troops remain near Ukraine’s borders, and their analysts say they pose a threat.
  • Putin said the West was neglecting Russia’s fundamental concerns, but Moscow is willing to talk about security.

Russia’s concerns

  • It opposes NATO membership for Georgia and Ukraine.
  • It wants NATO to withdraw its troops from Eastern Europe and the Black Sea.
  • It wants the Minsk process to address the Ukraine situation (between Kiev and Russia-backed separatists in Donbas).

NATO’s Open door policy

  • The founding treaty promises a ‚Äúopen door‚ÄĚ policy for European countries seeking membership, and a mutual defence clause ensures that all members will defend an ally in need.
  • Although not a member, NATO considers Ukraine a partner and hence supports it.
  • A surge of people escaping combat across European borders, probable cyber and disinformation attacks in the event of a confrontation in Ukraine frighten NATO.
  • NATO members like the US, UK, and Canada are assisting Ukraine.

NATO bolster its defenses

  • In the event of an invasion of Ukraine, NATO Defence Ministers in Brussels discussed sending soldiers and equipment to nations bordering Russia and the Black Sea.
  • The US will send 5,000 troops to Poland and Romania.
  • The UK is sending hundreds of soldiers and warships to Poland.
  • Germany, the Netherlands, and Norway are sending more troops.
  • Air policing is provided by Denmark and Spain..

India’s response

  • India is said to support basic European security ideals and is ready to retaliate if attacked.
  • It is also stated that India has devised a package of sanctions that will be severe and proportionate.
  • Indian authorities have set up control Centre and emergency phone lines for Ukrainian students and professionals.
  • En outre, talks are underway to expand the number of flights to assist Indian citizens.

https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/russia-says-pull-back-continues-amid-nato-us-scepticism/article65056661.ece

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