140,000 Russian troops now deployed on Ukraine’s border, defense minister says

8 February 2022, 01:31 PM

Russia has already amassed 140,000 troops on Ukraine’s borders, Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov said on Ukrainian television channel ICTV’s Svoboda Slova political talk show on Feb. 7. 

Reznikov said the Russian military presence on Ukraine’s border had recently grown.

“As of today, there are 120,000 troops deployed on Ukraine’s borders,” said Reznikov.

“If we add the 72 aviation and marine units, eleven of which are deployed in Belarus, that will be 140,000…”

Russia has been massing troops on the Ukrainian border since the end of October 2021.

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International media have speculated that Russia may invade Ukraine in early 2022, in an operation that could involve up to 200,000 Russian soldiers.

The Kremlin says the troop movements are an internal affair of the Russian Federation.

At the same time, Moscow has repeatedly accused Ukraine of planning “provocations,” and alleged that Kyiv plans to regain control of the occupied territories by military means. The Kremlin has failed to back up any of its allegations with evidence, however.

Russian troops have also been deployed to Belarus, as part of previously unscheduled military exercises. However, Russian equipment has been spotted along the Ukrainian-Belarusian border, far from the zone where the exercises are supposed to take place.

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