NATO countries scramble to deny ground troops to go into Ukraine after Moscow's warning

    WORLD  27 February 2024 - 20:12

    France’s suggestion that Ukraine’s allies could potentially send ground troops into Ukraine has caused indignation and outrage in Russia, with officials warning that it could provoke a direct conflict between Russia and NATO member states.

    Eyebrows were raised on February 26 when French President Emmanuel Macron suggested that European heads of state and Western officials, who met in Paris, had talked about the possibility of sending ground troops into Ukraine, according to CNBC.

    “There is no consensus today to officially, openly, and with endorsement, send troops on the ground. But in terms of dynamics, nothing should be ruled out. We will do everything necessary to ensure that Russia cannot win this war,” Macron said in a press conference on February 26 evening.

    Moscow was quick to seize on the comments, with the Kremlin’s Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov telling reporters on February 27 that if European NATO members sent troops to fight in Ukraine it would make a conflict between Russia and NATO inevitable.

    “In this case, we need to talk not about probability, but about inevitability, and that’s how we evaluate it,” he said, news agency TASS reported, when asked about the likelihood of a direct conflict between Russia and the Western military alliance if its troops crossed the border.

    Peskov added that NATO countries “must also evaluate” the consequences of such actions and and “ask the question whether this corresponds to their interests, and most importantly, to the interests of the citizens of their countries.”

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov also weighed in, advising any countries considering sending troops to Ukraine to “use their heads,” news agency TASS added.

    “It seems to me that those who not only express such thoughts, but even admit them in their heads, should still use that head for more rational thoughts, [as it’s] safer for Europe,” Lavrov said at a press conference on February 27.

    European allies row back on the idea

    European allies have been quick to play down the comments, with Germany issuing a hasty denial that it had any plans to put “German troops on Ukrainian soil.” The UK and Spain also publicly rejected the idea, which would see troops from NATO member states in direct conflict with longtime nemesis and nuclear power Russia.

    German Chancellor Olaf Scholz insisted there was no consensus on deploying ground troops among European leaders and officials from the UK, Canada and US who met in Paris on February 26.

    “Once again, in a very good debate, it was discussed that what was agreed from the outset among ourselves and with each other also applies to the future, namely that there will be no ground troops, no soldiers on Ukrainian soil sent there by European countries or NATO states,” Scholz said on the sidelines of an event.

    Germany’s Vice-Chancellor Robert Habeck also commented with “advice” for France, saying it would be more helpful for the country to send weaponry and tanks to Ukraine, Reuters reported. He likewise said that there would be “no German soldiers on Ukrainian soil.”

    A spokesman for the UK’s Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said the country had no plans for a “large-scale” deployment of troops to Ukraine, separate from the small number of personnel that were already in the country to support Ukraine’s armed forces.

    Madrid has also publicly refuted the notion, with government spokesperson Pilar Alegria saying Spain does not agree with a French proposal to send European ground troops to Ukraine. She added that Spain wanted to limit aid to sending more weapons and other materials to Kyiv.

    “Unity has been and is the most effective weapon Europe has to face up against [Russian President Vladimir] Putin’s attack,” Alegria said, according to comments translated by Reuters.

    Earlier, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg told the Associated Press news agency that NATO has no plans to send combat troops into Ukraine.

    Stoltenberg said that “NATO allies are providing unprecedented support to Ukraine. We have done that since 2014 and stepped up after the full-scale invasion. But there are no plans for NATO combat troops on the ground in Ukraine.”

    NATO membership obliges member states to commit to protect each other if any one of them is attacked. “Article 5 provides that if a NATO Ally is the victim of an armed attack, each and every other member of the Alliance will consider this act of violence as an armed attack against all members and will take the actions it deems necessary to assist the Ally attacked,” the group states.

    Caliber.Az

    Subscribe to our Telegram channel


Read also

Situation in east Ukraine has "deteriorated significantly", Kyiv commander says

13 April 2024 - 16:42

Ukraine starts building first US-design nuclear reactors

13 April 2024 - 16:20

Iranian media confirms IRGC's seizure of Israeli-linked ship near Strait of Hormuz UPDATED

13 April 2024 - 16:31

This Eid, Muslims in India face repression, erasure of their cultural identity Article by Middle East Eye

13 April 2024 - 14:57

11 passengers shot dead in southwestern Pakistan

13 April 2024 - 14:40

Iran readies 100 cruise missiles for possible Israel strike, US says

13 April 2024 - 13:51
ADVERTS
Video
Latest news

    "The major war in the Middle East entirely depends on Tehran"

    Expert opinion on Caliber.Az

    13 April 2024 - 17:38

    President Tokayev cancels Astana International Forum amidst massive floods

    13 April 2024 - 17:27

    South Korea, Britain to jointly host AI Seoul Summit in May

    13 April 2024 - 17:16

    Türkiye withdraws from Treaty on Conventional Armed Forces in Europe

    Experts analyse reasons and implications

    13 April 2024 - 17:05

    Ruling party leader accuses Georgian president of engaging in anti-state activities

    13 April 2024 - 16:53

    Situation in east Ukraine has "deteriorated significantly", Kyiv commander says

    13 April 2024 - 16:42

    Iranian media confirms IRGC's seizure of Israeli-linked ship near Strait of Hormuz

    UPDATED

    13 April 2024 - 16:31

    Ukraine starts building first US-design nuclear reactors

    13 April 2024 - 16:20

    President Biden's son Hunter loses bid to dismiss gun charges

    13 April 2024 - 16:09

    Peace with Azerbaijan only survival formula for Armenia

    Expert opinions on Caliber.Az

    13 April 2024 - 15:57

    Azerbaijan explores cooperation with UNESCO

    Foreign Minister meets Egypt's candidate

    13 April 2024 - 15:46

    Armenian Army faces criticism amidst allegations of mismanagement

    13 April 2024 - 15:24

    US sets deadline for consideration of draft aid package to Ukraine

    13 April 2024 - 15:13

    This Eid, Muslims in India face repression, erasure of their cultural identity

    Article by Middle East Eye

    13 April 2024 - 14:57

    11 passengers shot dead in southwestern Pakistan

    13 April 2024 - 14:40

    How France supports terror

    Strategy of destruction and manipulation

    13 April 2024 - 14:31

    Diplomat refutes allegations that China sends weapons to party in Ukraine conflict

    13 April 2024 - 14:29

    Türkiye eliminates 4 more PKK terrorists in northern Iraq

    VIDEO

    13 April 2024 - 14:18

    Israel fires further airstrikes at Hezbollah targets in southern Lebanon

    13 April 2024 - 14:02

    Iran readies 100 cruise missiles for possible Israel strike, US says

    13 April 2024 - 13:51

    New Caledonian anti-French protest uses Azerbaijan's "Iron Fist" as programme logo

    PHOTO

    13 April 2024 - 13:40

    Russian military trainers arrive in Niger as African country pulls away from US

    13 April 2024 - 13:29

    128 stranded midair rescued after cable car accident in Türkiye

    UPDATED/VIDEO

    13 April 2024 - 13:18

    Russia conducts test launch of intercontinental ballistic missile

    13 April 2024 - 13:07

    Armenian provocateurs to face justice for border incident

    Acknowledgment marks positive turn in ties with Azerbaijan

    13 April 2024 - 12:56

    Sydney police say 6 dead after shopping mall stabbings

    13 April 2024 - 12:45

    All power units of Zaporizhzhya NPP put in "cold shutdown" state

    13 April 2024 - 12:34

    Israel changes entry rules

    13 April 2024 - 12:23

    Kazakh leader calls for swift peace treaty between Baku, Yerevan

    13 April 2024 - 12:19

    US sees Iran moving military assets including drones and cruise missiles

    13 April 2024 - 12:12

    Kazakh President to pay official visit to Armenia

    13 April 2024 - 12:01

    What are Iran’s missile and drone capabilities?

    Analysis by The Times of Israel

    13 April 2024 - 11:50

    Armenian pundit warns "sea to sea Armenia" could provoke war with neighbors

    13 April 2024 - 11:39

    US bans imports of Russian aluminum, copper and nickel — US Treasury

    13 April 2024 - 11:29

    Karabakh, renewable energy take priority in national development strategy

    Azerbaijan's energy renaissance

    13 April 2024 - 11:18

    Azerbaijan clears Khankandi from Armenian weapons

    13 April 2024 - 11:07

    US says China is boosting Russia's war machine in Ukraine

    13 April 2024 - 10:56

    Georgian President calls ruling party a "Russian dream"

    13 April 2024 - 10:45

    US expects Iran to carry out direct attack on Israel

    As Biden warns "don’t"

    13 April 2024 - 10:34

    Media: Pashinyan withholds details of Brussels meeting from fellow MPs

    13 April 2024 - 10:24

All news