German MEP baffled by Ukrainian suggestions that US is overstating Russian invasion risk

31 January 2022, 03:05 PM

Comments by the leader of Ukraine’s ruling Servant of the People party, David Arakhamia, suggesting that the United States is deliberately sowing panic about a potential Russian attack on Ukraine, have apparently baffled German MEP Viola von Cramon.

“Are they all getting high in Ukraine, or what’s going on then?” von Cramon said in a tweet on Jan. 29, responding to Arakhamia’s earlier comments.

On Jan. 28, Arakhamia said that “the Unites States and others are sowing panic about an invasion of Ukraine; it’s not a friendly thing to do.” He added that prospects of a full-blown war between Russia and Ukraine are being “artificially amplified” by Western media.

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His statement was broadly in line with comments by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who at a press conference with foreign media on Jan. 28 blamed Ukraine’s recent economic troubles on what he claimed was a false “imminent invasion” narrative.

Ukrainian officials fear that the continued threat of invasion and risk of panic will spook potential investors and damage the Ukrainian economy.

The National Bank of Ukraine has pinned the recent fall in Ukraine’s projected GDP growth and a weakening of the national currency, the hryvnia, on geopolitical tensions caused by the Russian military escalation.

Since the end of October 2021, Russia has been massing troops close to the Ukrainian border.

Russia has since deployed more than 130,000 troops and offensive weapons near the Ukrainian border and in the temporarily occupied parts of the country, according to the latest intelligence estimate by the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine.

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 situation on Ukraine's eastern border is a matter of deep concern for both U.S. and European officials. According to U.S. President Joe Biden, the White House is looking at a range of options to dissuade Russia from attacking Ukraine.

Biden has defined these measures as “the most comprehensive and meaningful set of initiatives to make it very, very difficult for Mr. Putin to go ahead and do what people believe he may do.”

While Russia has denied plans to invade, it has also refused to provide assurances that it would not do so, instead issuing its demand for so-called “security guarantees” to the United States and NATO.

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