Ukraine may drop its bid to join NATO in order to avoid war with Russia, the BBC reported the country’s ambassador to the UK saying. The move would be a concession to Russia’s build-up of troops at Ukraine’s border. 

Ambassador Vadym Prystaiko spoke to the BBC saying that the country was flexible in its goal of joining the alliance. Notably, Russian president Vladimir Putin has repeatedly asked that Ukraine’s entry into NATO be blocked and threatened war if the country continues with the intention to join the military alliance which includes the US and European countries. 

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When asked if the country might be willing to change its stance, Prystaiko said “We might – especially being threatened like that, blackmailed by that, and pushed to it”, as per the BBC. 

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Ukraine has had a promise since 2008 that it would be allowed to join NATO. This would bring the US-led alliance closer to Russia’s borders, and Reuters has reported Putin noting that “red lines” would have to be laid down so NATO doesn’t use Ukraine as a launch base for its missiles into Russia. 

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As both the US and Russia have locked horns, the latter has sent troops and heavy weapons to Ukraine’s borders. A threat of invasion is imminent as per the US, and the government has already advised its country people to evacuate. The UK too has followed suit. 

While Moscow has denied any plans of attack, it has stated that NATO should deescalate its military presence in eastern Europe. The US has however sent troops to bolster support for Ukraine and provided lethal aid as well. This term, coined by the Joe Biden government, entails the supply of arms and ammunition. 

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Despite the troop buildup and growing tensions at Ukraine’s borders, European state heads and the US government have kept channels for diplomatic talks open.