Dominic Raab, the Deputy Prime Minister of the United Kingdom said Russia will face “very severe consequences” if the country tries to place a “puppet regime” in Ukraine. The warning comes as tensions have flared along the Russia-Ukraine borders.
Building on the accusations raised earlier, Raab said in an interview with Sky News, “There will be very serious consequences if Russia takes this move to try and invade but also install a puppet regime”, according to reports from Reuters.
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The blame initiated by the United Kingdom was rejected by the Russian foreign ministry on Sunday, tagging them as “disinformation.” Moscow urged London to “stop spreading nonsense.”
The ministry wrote in a tweet, “Disinformation circulated by @FCDOGovUK is yet another indication that it is the @NATO Members led by the Anglo-Saxon nations who are escalating tensions around #Ukraine.”
British authorities have failed to release any evidence so far.
British officials said that Ukrainian politicians have established and maintained links with Russian intelligence officials. The accusations also tied former MP Yevgen Murayev to the alleged motive, tagging him as a potential leader for Kyiv.
Murayev has spoken up on the matter and said that the accusations will divide Ukraine into a pro-Russian and pro-Western country.
He said in a statement, “The time of pro-Western and pro-Russian politicians in Ukraine is gone forever. Ukraine needs new politicians whose policy will be based solely on the principles of the national interests of Ukraine and the Ukrainian people”, according to reports from Reuters.
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The British government made the claim based on an intelligence assessment, without providing evidence to back it up. It comes amid high tensions between Moscow and the West over Russia’s designs on Ukraine.
Amid diplomatic efforts to defuse the crisis, United Kingdom’s Defense Secretary Ben Wallace is expected to meet Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu for talks in Moscow.