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January 27, 2022
Relations between the United States and Russia took a turn after Russia ordered the U.S. Embassy staff in Moscow to return to the U.S. by the end of January.
According to CNBC, this move by Russia is retaliation for Anatoly Antonov, a Russian ambassador to the U.S., saying that 27 Russian diplomats and their families will be required to leave the U.S. on January 30th because American authorities did not extend their visas. An additional 27 diplomats will have to leave by June for the same reason.
Tensions between the two countries continue to rise along with fears of a possible Russian invasion of Ukraine. U.S. President Joe Biden spoke with Russian President Vladmir Putin on December 7th, making it clear that the U.S. and Allies would respond with strong measures if Russia escalated the situation at the Ukraine border (White House).
After the intense discussion between the two world leaders, President Biden reported that he is not considering sending U.S. troops to aid Ukraine, as the looming Russian army continues to grow along the Ukraine-Russia border (The Guardian).
The head of Ukraine’s military intelligence service has warned that Russia may invade in late January, with U.S. intelligence expressing similar concerns. In fact, it was reported that Russia may be preparing a multi-front attack with nearly 175,000 troops (ABC News).
Karen Donfriend, U.S. assistant secretary of state, met with Ukrainian officials on Tuesday to offer support as tensions build at the Russian border (Reuters). “Our aim is to support our Ukrainian colleagues as we work to de-escalate tensions due to Russia’s build-up,” she said in a statement.
U.S. officials do not believe Putin has decided to use force or to use the build-up as intimidation. However, it seems the possibility of an invasion of Ukraine is much higher than it has been since 2015.
ARTICLE: JILLIAN WEIDNER
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: RFERL.COM