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Russia finds worrisome plans for US military buildup in Poland — Zakharova

Alongside the US and NATO buildups near Russia’s Western borders, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman drew attention to growing military activity near Russia’s southern borders

MOSCOW, August 19. /TASS/. Moscow finds worrisome the US plans for increasing its military presence in Poland, where infrastructure is being created allowing for a prompt buildup of the US contingent to 20,000, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told a news briefing on Thursday.

"We are worried over the prospects of growing US military presence in Poland. There are plans for considerably increasing the overall strength of US troops in addition to the already stationed 4,500 men. The infrastructure being created will allow for promptly building up the US military group in that country to 20,000," she said.

Alongside the US and NATO buildups near Russia’s Western borders Zakharova drew attention to growing military activity near Russia’s southern borders.

"Kiev regularly holds exercises in accordance with aggressive scenarios with NATO forces taking part and actively upgrades military infrastructures. Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister [Alexey] Reznikov’s statements of August 10 to the effect US air defense systems might be stationed in Ukraine was another evidence of Kiev’s reluctance to implement the Minsk package of measures, in particular, article 10 of this agreement obliging the Ukrainian authorities as a party to the conflict to remove all foreign military units, mercenaries and equipment from the country," Zakharova said. "As one can see, the top brass in Kiev and their Western patrons prefer to follow the path of Ukraine’s militarization, thus delaying a peace settlement of the intra-Ukrainian conflict."

NATO exercises

Zakharova said that even amid the pandemic NATO was pushing ahead with military exercises on the eastern flank.

"Even against the backdrop of the pandemic the alliance has been holding exercises on the eastern flank, including some under a scenario of what they describe as resistance to a ‘comparable enemy’, which naturally implies Russia. We believe that such exercises are provocative and, in the current situation, at least shortsighted," she stressed.

In the meantime, Zakharova said, NATO’s leadership keeps reiterating the concept of Moscow’s containment by force.

"As we have been able to see, NATO is unable to identify the real threats and begins to address them only after a world collapse. You know why? The answer is simple: for many years they remained focused on and invested huge resources into persuading their audiences and their citizens to stay obsessed with an ostensible Russian threat," she concluded.