Russia is not going to agree to stop armed aggression in the east of Ukraine, Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak believes.
In an interview with the Uriadovy Courier he stated that the probability of the escalation of the conflict in the Donbas into full-scale aggression with the backing of the Kremlin has not diminished.
“We absolutely expect that the aggressive actions will continue in the east of Ukraine. Moreover, there is a possibility of the conflict escalating into full-scale aggression with the support of the Kremlin. This is true, which destroys illusions about Russia’s refusal to occupy part of our territory and the withdrawal of its troops in the short term,” the defense minister said.
“It has concentrated 19 battalion-tactical groups of the first and second echelons with more than 77 thousand troops at our border,” the minister stressed. These groups includes about 1,000 tanks, 2,300 combat vehicles, more than 1,100 artillery systems and about 400 multiple rocket launchers.
Poltorak believes that Putin’s regime still hopes that Ukraine will return to the so-called Russian world and reject Euro-Atlantic integration.