Last Update 21:11
Friday, 20 September 2019

Russian military presence in Ukraine irrefutable: US general

AP , Wednesday 24 Jun 2015
US
The commander of U.S. troops in Europe Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges (Photo: Reuters)
Share/Bookmark
Views: 1018
Share/Bookmark
Views: 1018

The commander of U.S. troops in Europe has dismissed claims by Russia that it is staying out of the Ukraine conflict, speaking of "clear and irrefutable evidence" to the contrary.

Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges spoke of both direct and indirect military help by Moscow to Russian separatists, in comments released Wednesday from a briefing to a closed session of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.

"Russia is actively and massively fueling this conflict," he declared during the briefing Tuesday.

He spoke to the OSCE as the foreign ministers of Russia, Ukraine, France and Germany met to discuss the conflict amid escalating fighting that is throwing doubts on a shaky peace accord.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said afterward that the four agreed to "not allow a breakdown" of a peace deal reached in February.

"There is a sense that there are powers who would like to destroy this process," Lavrov told reporters in Paris. "I won't name them. But such forces exist."

Suggesting those forces are to be found in Moscow, Hodges cited a weekend report from OSCE monitors mentioning more than 500 explosions over the weekend to back his assertion.

Such powerful barrages are "not something that you can put together in the basement of your home," he said. Nor, said Hodges "could this amount of explosive power be applied without a sophisticated supply chain" as well as soldiers and officers who had trained on the complex weapons systems delivering the explosive punch.

Hodges also listed Russian command and control support of military operations in Ukraine and transfers and sightings of military equipment in eastern Ukraine, including tank models that only Russian forces possess, sophisticated air defense systems and rockets.

Hodges also disputed Russian claims that Moscow had no boots on the ground in Ukraine. "Russian soldiers are active parts of the fighting force," he said. "These are not volunteers or mercenaries; they are trained, equipped, and uniformed active duty Russian soldiers."

Short link:

 

Email
 
Name
 
Comment's
Title
 
Comment
Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 1000 characters (roughly 200 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.
Latest

© 2010 Ahram Online.