Russia-Ukraine Live Updates: Russia Accuses U.S. of Creating Hysteria

Live Updates

The U.S. will "present the facts" in a face-off with Russian officials at a tense meeting of the U.N. Security Council later today in a last-ditch attempt to avoid a conflict in Ukraine.

U.S. Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield claims Vladimir Putin's actions pose "a clear threat to international peace and security" but Russian officials accused the U.S. of "baseless allegations and assumptions."

Meanwhile, the Pentagon has warned that enough units to "invade the whole of Ukraine" are massed on the Ukraine-Russian border as tensions show no sign of calming.

  • U.S. and Ukraine turn to U.N. in an attempt to further deter a Russian invasion
  • Russia accuses the U.S. of using "baseless allegations and assumptions as a threat to international order"
  • Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin says there is still "time and space" to resolve Ukraine-Russian border crisis through diplomacy
  • British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to visit Ukraine this week and will "reiterate the need for Russia to step back" in a phone call with Vladimir Putin
  • Tensions continue to rise after Russia claims unknown military aircraft "staged a provocation" near Crimean city Sevastopol
  • UN Security meeting was held Monday to discuss crisis in Ukraine
  • Biden warns of "swift and severe" consequences against Russia if they invade Ukraine

Russia rejects accusations from U.S. that it plans to attack Ukraine

Russia accused the U.S. of creating hysteria and fueling tensions in Ukraine.

Ambassador Vasily Nebenzya opposed holding the U.N. Security Council meeting.

Russia once again rejected the accusation from the U.S. and others that it is planning to invade Ukraine and that an active Russia aggression has already taken place.

Nebenzya said there is no evidence to confirm these claims and denied Russia has stirred up tensions in the region. He challenged the U.S. to show anything to support its claim.

This lack of evidence has "not prevented [the U.S.] from whipping up hysteria" that has impacted Ukraine's economy.

Russia also accused the West of provoking escalation of tensions by talking about the threat of war.

"You are calling for this, you are waiting for this to happen," he said. "It's like you want your words to become a reality."

Russia also accused the U.S. and NATO of "driving a wedge" between Russia and Ukraine by "brainwashing" Ukrainian with ant-Russia thinking.

Nebenzya said the U.S. wants to prevent the "coexistence of two brotherly peoples" in order to weaken Russia and create instability.

Finally, Russia accused the U.S. of being hypocrites for pumping Ukraine with weapons and deploying thousands of troops in foreign countries. Nebenzya also said Russia's military budget is "12 times lower" that the U.S. military budget.

China objects to open talks to ease tensions in Ukraine

China questioned claims from the U.S. and other western nations that war between Russia and Ukraine is imminent.

Ambassador Zhang Jun said China does not align with the U.S. claim that the deployment of Russia troops at the Ukraine border is a threat to international peace because Russia said it has "no plans" to invade Ukraine.

Zhang Jun opposed holding discussions on this matter in public, pushing for "quiet diplomacy" rather than "microphone diplomacy."

He said this kind of open dialogue is not conducive to make concrete progress to diffuse tensions.

China also called on parties to be calm and not to aggravate tensions or hype-up the crisis, but to resolve the issue through consultations in which all sides take each other's legitimate security concerns into account.

China's position is to solve these tensions through the implementation of the Minsk Agreement.

Additionally, China is critical of NATO expansion, saying it epitomizes "group politics" that embodies a Cold War mentality.

Biden warns of consequences against Russia if they invade Ukraine

President Biden released a statement sending a warning to Russia as the UN Security Council held a meeting to discuss the crisis at Ukraine's border.

Biden warned of the quick consequences that Russia would undergo if they invaded Ukraine.

"If instead Russia chooses to walk away from diplomacy and attack Ukraine, Russia will bear the responsibility, and it will face swift and severe consequences."

"Today's Security Council meeting is a critical step in rallying the world to speak out in one voice: rejecting the use of force, calling for military de-escalation, supporting diplomacy as the best path forward, and demanding accountability from every member state to refrain from military aggression against its neighbors," Biden said in the statement.

UN holds security council meeting to address Ukraine, Russia crisis

The United Nations Security Council held a meeting Monday to discuss the crisis in Russia and Ukraine.

Immediately following the meeting of the 15-nation council, with 10 in favor and three abstaining, the council voted to proceed with the meeting, with only Russia and China objecting.

"The situation we are facing in Europe is urgent and dangerous," American ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield said in her opening remarks. "Russia's actions strike at the very heart of the U.N. charter."

Tucker Carlson takes aim at Ukraine critics

The Fox News anchor hit back at accusations he is arguing the case for Russian President Vladimir Putin over the crisis and mocked how the media have framed the dispute.

In a segment on his show, Carlson referred to a report that Ukraine President Volodomyr Zelenskiy appealed to Biden to ease his message that a war was inevitable.

What can we infer from this? It's simple. If you're not terrified about the prospect of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the question is whose side are you on here? You're on Vladimir Putin's side.

He went on to suggest that if Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelenskiy was trying to defuse tensions, then he has also "been compromised by Russian misinformation".

FULL STORY: 'We're Agents of Putin Too!': Tucker Carlson Mocks His Critics Over Ukraine

E.U. politicians visit Ukraine to 'gather first-hand information'

A group of MEPs are on a visit to the city of Mariupol today to "familiarize themselves with the situation on the ground" and report back to the E.U. to shape how it responds to the ongoing crisis.

The group met "experts who are stepping up their support to their Ukrainian partners in response to the crisis", with a number of measures including enhanced information sharing and advice on contingency planning being taken.

Hungary's defence minister says 'no need' for foreign NATO troops in the country - reports

As the U.K. and others offer to deploy NATO troops in allied countries across Eastern Europe, Hungary has signaled it does not want foreign soldiers within its borders - despite the mass of Russian forces on the border of its neighbor Ukraine.

It comes after Boris Johnson told MPs "there's a question about Hungary and what we might do there" - something that has unnerved his ally. In a news conference with his British counterpart Ben Wallace, Hungary's Defence Minister Tibor Benko, said Hungary's government "wasn't against" NATO deploying troops in central and eastern European countries but opposed the idea that it was able "to perform this task on its own".

U.S. joins allies in preparing 'list' of Russia's elite to sanction if Ukraine is invaded

A list of major investors and people thought to be close to or in Vladimir Putin's inner circle has been drawn up between major economic allies, a senior official in the Biden administration confirmed to Reuters this morning.

The individuals we have identified are in or near the inner circles of the Kremlin and play a role in government decision making or are at a minimum complicit in the Kremlin's destabilizing behavior.

The U.S. has also created a specific set of sanctions for both Russian elites who meet the criteria and their family members living in the States. It comes after Biden threatened to put sanctions on Putin himself last week - but it is not clear if that forms part of the latest plans.

WATCH: General Mark Milley says Russia's military exercises 'feel different' than usual

Milley - the most senior officer in the U.S. Army - said the buildup of Russian forces on Ukraine's border is the largest in "recent" memory at a press briefing on the crisis.

U.K. to announce 'improved legislation' to sanction Russian oligarchs

Russian billionaires - often with ties to the Kremlin and Putin directly - could be faced with the seizer of their property in the latest bid by the British government to deter Putin from invading Ukraine, according to Foreign Secretary Liz Truss.

In an interview with Sky News, she said deterring the Russian president was "the number one priority" amid escalating tensions over the build-up of troops on its border with Ukraine.

That's we are offering to deploy extra troops into Estonia, we are providing more air support across the Black Sea, and we're supplying defensive weapons to Ukraine to make sure they are in the best possible position should Vladimir Putin try to stage an incursion.

The foreign secretary also said she would announce the new legislation later this week.

NATO chief thanks Dutch PM for support packages

Jens Stoltenberg called up Mark Rutte this morning to discuss "contributions to NATO and discuss Russia's military build-up" in Ukraine.

In a tweet, he said made clear both sides will continue to "work hard for a political solution" to the crisis.

Biden confirms U.S. to be deployed to Eastern Europe - but 'not too many'

The President answered ambiguously when he was asked about an update on Ukraine, but said in a brief exchange with reporters on Friday that he would be ordering deployments to NATO ally countries "in the near term".

Biden did not offer a specific timeline or set number of troops out of the 8,500 currently on high alert, but he did seek to reiterate that there will not be American forces in Ukraine for now.

FULL STORY: President Biden Says He's Moving Troops to Eastern Europe but 'Not Too Many'

Ukraine's Foreign Minister 'grateful' for visit by Greek counterpart

Dmytro Kuleba said Nikos Dendias' trip to the country was a "timely decision" and called on Greece to "use all opportunities in bilateral relations with Russia" to discourage Putin from launching a full-scale invasion.

Unknown military aircraft 'staged provocation' near major Crimean city - reports

Russian flight tracker Avia.pro reported that the unidentified aircraft "simulated an attack on Sevastopol" by "performing a dangerous maneuver at a relatively short distance from the Russian border" on Saturday.

The aircraft was understood to be operated "in conjunction with the American Boeing RC-135W reconnaissance aircraft" but the "borders of Russian airspace were not violated," during the exercise.

Russia's deputy Foreign Minister visits India

Sergey Vershinin and Secretary (West) Reenat Sandhu are having "foreign policy consultations" in New Delhi, putting India in a difficult position on Ukraine.
The country has long been cordial with both Russia and the U.S., but now that relationship could be tested as both sides pile on the pressure over who to support should a full-scale invasion of Ukraine take place.

India has yet to publicly take sides on the issue - but it may not stay that way.

Boris Johnson to visit Ukraine and 'ramp up deterrence to avoid bloodshed in Europe'

The British Prime Minister is calling on Russia to "engage diplomatically" as he attempts to ramp up pressure on Putin to back down on Ukraine, despite his Defence Secretary Ben Wallace last week saying that he was "not optimistic" that an invasion could now be stopped.

Downing Street officials said Johnson will "reiterate the need for Russia to step back" in a phone call with the Russian president later this week.

The Prime Minister is determined to accelerate diplomatic efforts and ramp up deterrence to avoid bloodshed in Europe. He will reiterate the need for Russia to step back and engage diplomatically when he speaks to President Putin this week.

Putin holds meeting with Russian security officials ahead of U.N.

The Russian president opened the meeting, where Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov presented "strategic planning documents" on foreign policy, but did not give much away in a statement on Friday evening.

The Foreign Ministry took into account the recent global changes, including changes that took place in international politics over the past five years.

The document has not been shared publicly but will likely include Russia's analysis of the Ukraine crisis.

U.S. and Russia trade blows ahead of crucial U.N. meeting

U.S. Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield accused Vladimir Putin's government of stoking the possibility of a conflict in Ukraine but also violating the U.N. Charter, suggesting that members of the Security Council "must squarely examine the facts and consider what is at stake" for Russia and Europe if a conflict were to break out in the coming weeks.

But Russia's deputy ambassador Dmitry Polyanskiy angrily hit back against the accusation, claiming in a tweet that the U.S. had "proposed to discuss its own baseless allegations and assumptions" and called on fellow members of the Council to "not support this clear PR stunt".

Good morning and welcome to Newsweek's liveblog

The U.S. and Russia are preparing for a face-off at a meeting of the U.N. Security Council at 10am (ET) today, but Russia is claiming the Biden administration is using "baseless allegations" to get other countries on side.

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