The US explained the reason for withdrawing warships near Ukraine

The US explained the reason for withdrawing warships near Ukraine

The Pentagon said the United States withdrew warships from the Black Sea just before hostilities broke out in Ukraine to show Washington did not want to start a conflict.

“We send warships to and from the Black Sea as needed. And it was a wise decision as we anticipate a military operation in Ukraine coming,” Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said. at a press conference on March 30 about the move to withdraw warships from the Black Sea in mid-February.

The statement was made by Mr. Kirby when reporters asked about comments made by General Tod Wolters, commander of the US Army’s European Command (EUCOM), which admitted that the US had withdrawn all warships from the Black Sea before Russia. launched a military operation in Ukraine on February 24 and called on Washington to soon return naval forces to the region.

Kirby said that the decision to withdraw the warship “makes clear to all parties that the US does not want to start a conflict”, and asserts that there is no information about the possibility of the US redeploying warships to the Black Sea, the area. south of Ukraine as well as the Crimean peninsula annexed by Russia in 2014.

“We regularly deploy warships to and from the Black Sea, which is not unusual. We do not have a permanent presence in this sea. The process of dispatching ships depends on the requirements of the mission.” , Mr. Kirby added.

Before hostilities broke out in Ukraine, the United States periodically sent warships to the Black Sea to show support for Kiev and reassure regional allies, an activity frequently opposed by Russia. Moscow always deploys forces to monitor US and NATO warships in the Black Sea, but there are no incidents between the two sides.

The US has repeatedly stated that it will not deploy forces to fight in Ukraine, as well as rejecting the possibility of transferring fighters or establishing a no-fly zone in this country.

After the round of talks in Turkey on March 29, Russia said Ukraine declared its readiness to fulfill the demands that Moscow has emphasized for many years, including giving up ambitions to join NATO, maintaining neutrality, does not possess nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction, commits not to accept foreign troops or military bases on its territory.

However, Ukraine offered to “temporarily set aside” the issue of Crimea and the separatist territories in the Donbass. Meanwhile, Russia affirmed that it still holds the demand for Ukraine to recognize Crimea as part of Russia and recognize the independence of two breakaway territories in eastern Ukraine.

The US, Ukraine and some Western countries are skeptical of Russia’s claims to reduce fighting. Ukrainian authorities yesterday accused Russian forces of continuing to attack the city of Chernihiv in the north of the country.

Ben Oakley
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