Berlin, 16 February 2022 (dpa/MIA) — Russia’s ambassador to the EU, Vladimir Chizhov, has rejected US warnings of a possible Russian attack on Ukraine on Wednesday.
“As far as Russia is concerned, I can assure you that there will be no attack this Wednesday. There will be no escalation in the coming week either, or in the week after that, or in the coming month,” Chischow said in remarks published in Wednesday’s edition of the German daily Die Welt.
“Wars in Europe rarely start on a Wednesday,” he added.
The US government has said that it considers a Russian incursion into Ukraine possible before the close of the Winter Olympics in China on Sunday.
The United States and its NATO allies charge that Russia is preparing a renewed attack on Ukraine, following the 2014 annexation of Crimea, an accusation that Moscow denies.
Chizhov condemned the US remarks about a possible attack on Ukraine.
“When you make allegations — especially very serious allegations against Russia — you also have a responsibility to present evidence. Otherwise it’s slander.” He asked: “So where’s the evidence?”
The ambassador again urged the West to take Russia’s security concerns seriously.
“When our partners finally listen to our legitimate concerns, a process of detente will not be long in coming. That would be in the interest of all Europeans from Lisbon to Vladivostok, but also of all other nations in the world.”
The Kremlin has demanded that NATO restrict activities in Eastern Europe and promise to add no former Soviet republics — such as Ukraine — as new members. Moscow has also demanded a ban on deploying weapons systems, including a US missile defense system, off Russia’s borders.