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Satellite Images Show Russian Troops Arrive Near Ukraine Border As US Says 7,000 More In Movement

Satellite Images Show Russian Troops Arrive Near Ukraine Border As US Says 7,000 More In Movement

The United States has said 7,000 more Russian troops have arrived near the Ukraine border, contradicting claims made by the Kremlin.

The United States has said 7,000 more Russian troops have arrived near the Ukraine border, contradicting claims made by the Kremlin that it was pulling back.

A day after Russia said that it was partially withdrawing some forces, satellite imagery revealed that much of the military build-up remained in place.

The Times reports that a number of vehicle convoys were seen redeploying troops, including one spotted heading west through Belarus towards Ukraine.

The images were cited by US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken when he yesterday disputed Russia's claims of a pull back, saying instead that troops were moving 'toward the border, not away from the border.'

NATO secretary Jens Stoltenberg also cast doubt on the claims, saying the alliance was yet to see 'any sign of de-escalation on the ground.'

In an address to the American people earlier this week, President Joe Biden revealed that US intelligence suggested as many as 150,000 Russian troops were currently amassed at various locations on the Ukraine border, saying 'our analysts indicate that they remain very much in a threatening position.'

As well as military personnel, images revealed armoured equipment including artillery units, helicopters and tanks positioned in convoy formations in Belarus, western Russia and Crimea.

Russia has denied it plans to invade Ukraine, and has said its troops are in Belarus on military exercises due to end on February 20.

However in an interview on LBC today, British armed forces minister James Heappey warned that the satellite images suggested Moscow was 'ramping up' its military preparations.

'That there are more moving to the area than people moving away, and that the key combat enablers that we saw moved towards the Ukrainian border over the last few days now include bridges having been built and a number of other things, suggest the final preparations are being made for them to invade,' he said.

News of the additional build up comes as western leaders continue to urge a peaceful resolution to the crisis, with UK foreign secretary Liz Truss set to give a speech in Kyiv today, calling on Russia to 'take the path of diplomacy.' However some have expressed skepticism that Putin wants to pursue talks, with one US official telling CNN 'every indication we have now is they mean only to publicly offer to talk, and make claims about de-escalation, while privately mobilizing for war.'

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Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Russia, World News