NATO slams Putin's remarks on Ukraine army

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NATO slams Putin's remarks on Ukraine army - Al Jazeera English

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has dismissed a claim by Russian President Vladimir Putin that Ukraine's army was a "NATO foreign legion".

In a statement issued on Monday, Stoltenberg also accused Moscow of boosting support for pro-Russian rebels who have seized large parts of eastern Ukraine. The claim has been repeatedly denied by Russia.

"We have seen a substantial increase in the flow of equipment from Russia to the separatists in Ukraine," he said

Putin called the Ukrainian military a "NATO foreign legion," reflecting his readiness to stand up to the West regardless of rising economic costs, as Standard & Poor's rating agency downgraded Russia's credit rating to junk.

While the Russian ruble tumbled further on the news of the downgrade, Putin's spokesman shrugged off the Western threat of more sanctions as "short-sighted."

Speaking to students in St Petersburg, Putin said the Ukrainian leadership was to blame for the upsurge in violence and accused it of using civilians as "cannon fodder" in the conflict.

"(Ukraine's army) is not even an army, it's a foreign legion, in this case a NATO foreign legion," Putin said, adding that it's serving the goal of "the geopolitical containment of Russia, which absolutely don't coincide with the national interests of the Ukrainian people".

From the onset of the conflict, which has claimed more than 5,100 since April, Russia urged the Ukrainian authorities to offer broad powers to the separatist eastern provinces and provide amnesty to the rebels.

A cease-fire deal signed in September by representatives of the government and the insurgents included some of those provisions along with a pledge to withdraw foreign fighters and place European monitors on the Russian-Ukrainian border, but it has been violated by both parties and fighting has continued.

The Kremlin's uncompromising stance is rooted in its desire to prevent Ukraine from ever joining NATO by securing a broad autonomy for the separatist provinces in the east. To avoid being called a party to the conflict, as Ukraine and the West see it, Russia is pushing the Ukrainian government to speak directly to the rebels.

The latest rebel offensive, which involved the deadly shelling of a strategic port city of Mariupol over the weekend, appeared aimed at pressuring Kiev into such talks.
 
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I absolutely feel that it is time that something was done especially after the tragic flight being shot down and blame given to Ukraine rather that Russia. Although I feel that each country should just get on with their pwn business there are times when there should be a way for someone neutral to intervene so that peace can be salvaged and war avoided. Russia should have no say in who joins NATO or any other organisation as each country should be decided by a neutral "planet body" who can look at what is good for the world. Wouldn't that be a good idea? It is about time Russia was looked at and investigated as well as the Ukraine as the alarm bells are ringing there and we need to step in.
 
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There's something bothering me about this news. It claims that the value of the Russian rubble recently took a turn for the worse (courtesy of Standard & Poor's ratings). When exactly did this happen - before or after the increase of arms support to the rebels? If it happened prior to the increase of support, then this may mean that Russia's trying to hide the growing ills in their own economy through increased military activity. If it happened after showering the rebels with support, then it's a means to punish Russia. Russia shouldn't be bitter about the assistance Ukraine has received. The moment they sided with the rebels, they already lost the confidence of their former allies and acquaintances.
 
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xTinx I think the sanctions were applied after they took the eastern part through referendum. I am not sure though, but in many instances is more of a punish than a bad economy.
 
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I absolutely feel that it is time that something was done especially after the tragic flight being shot down and blame given to Ukraine rather that Russia. Although I feel that each country should just get on with their own business there are times when there should be a way for someone neutral to intervene so that peace can be salvaged and war avoided. Russia should have no say in who joins NATO or any other organisation as each country should be decided by a neutral "planet body" who can look at what is good for the world.
For Russia, Ukraine joining NATO is like letting your worst enemy live next door. Nonetheless I don't see the reason why they should make Ukraine's decision to join the EU their business. What is [it ]they're afraid they'll lose should Ukraine join the EU? It's not like Russia imports anything from Ukraine. If Russia was "good", they wouldn't have to force their neighbors to be their allies.
 
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Ukraine joining NATO (which will never happen this time soon) will basically be a free card for Russia to send troops over to protect "russian citizens".
 
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Now the question I want to launch here is, what if it was from NATO? Ukraine is (was...) and independent country, so they can join who ever they desire, including NATO, what has Russia to do with it?
 
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NATO slams Putin's remarks on Ukraine army - Al Jazeera English

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has dismissed a claim by Russian President Vladimir Putin that Ukraine's army was a "NATO foreign legion".

In a statement issued on Monday, Stoltenberg also accused Moscow of boosting support for pro-Russian rebels who have seized large parts of eastern Ukraine. The claim has been repeatedly denied by Russia.

"We have seen a substantial increase in the flow of equipment from Russia to the separatists in Ukraine," he said

Putin called the Ukrainian military a "NATO foreign legion," reflecting his readiness to stand up to the West regardless of rising economic costs, as Standard & Poor's rating agency downgraded Russia's credit rating to junk.

While the Russian ruble tumbled further on the news of the downgrade, Putin's spokesman shrugged off the Western threat of more sanctions as "short-sighted."

Speaking to students in St Petersburg, Putin said the Ukrainian leadership was to blame for the upsurge in violence and accused it of using civilians as "cannon fodder" in the conflict.

"(Ukraine's army) is not even an army, it's a foreign legion, in this case a NATO foreign legion," Putin said, adding that it's serving the goal of "the geopolitical containment of Russia, which absolutely don't coincide with the national interests of the Ukrainian people".

From the onset of the conflict, which has claimed more than 5,100 since April, Russia urged the Ukrainian authorities to offer broad powers to the separatist eastern provinces and provide amnesty to the rebels.

A cease-fire deal signed in September by representatives of the government and the insurgents included some of those provisions along with a pledge to withdraw foreign fighters and place European monitors on the Russian-Ukrainian border, but it has been violated by both parties and fighting has continued.

The Kremlin's uncompromising stance is rooted in its desire to prevent Ukraine from ever joining NATO by securing a broad autonomy for the separatist provinces in the east. To avoid being called a party to the conflict, as Ukraine and the West see it, Russia is pushing the Ukrainian government to speak directly to the rebels.

The latest rebel offensive, which involved the deadly shelling of a strategic port city of Mariupol over the weekend, appeared aimed at pressuring Kiev into such talks.
Russia is playing politics once again even as the conflict escalates to deadlier levels. Russia is clearly supporting the rebels though it denies this fact and what i foresee is a situation where,because of the state of the economy which has slumped to its knees, the citizens will demand a change of guard and that regime will have to give way sooner than later.
 
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I think Putin is kind of always paranoid. He thinks that every move to back up other countries that Russia is fighting against is a move against them, to weaken her country and make it down to its knees. Well, as I see it, the international alliances of other countries are only doing what they are intended to be doing, and that is to help those countries who seek help and support.
 
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Russia is playing politics once again even as the conflict escalates to deadlier levels. Russia is clearly supporting the rebels though it denies this fact and what i foresee is a situation where,because of the state of the economy which has slumped to its knees, the citizens will demand a change of guard and that regime will have to give way sooner than later.
Democracy is an alien concept in Russia. Demonstrations against the administration would be violently quelled. Even if there are elections, since the 2012 elections were skewed in Putin's favor, should they be any election, using the same means, Putin would still be elected president. So sure of his victories is he that he declared, he won't be a president for life.
VLADIMIR PUTIN has said he won't remain Russia's president for life and will step down in line with the constitution no later than 2024
So yeah, Russians still have a long time to wait.
 
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I find it amusing that he states he will be president for many years to come and be so sure about it.
 
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I think Putin is kind of always paranoid. He thinks that every move to back up other countries that Russia is fighting against is a move against them, to weaken her country and make it down to its knees. Well, as I see it, the international alliances of other countries are only doing what they are intended to be doing, and that is to help those countries who seek help and support.
I don't know if that is paranoia or he just wants to control the region once again, but I am inclined to say that he has some sort of disease because he doesn't respect democracy, Russia is a dictatorship all over again.
 
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I think it is greed and the more Putin owns the better! He does not want Ukraine to be a part of NATO as this means he cannot interfere with the country anymore.
 
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I don't know why Russia don't mind its business and leave the people of Ukraine to govern their country the way they see fit. It is full time now that this Soviet Union mentality be broken and Russian starts to respect the independence of these former Soviet Union countries.
 
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Putin is greedy and sneaky too. He is clever because he picks on the little places that cant defend themselves and that the world doesn't really pay much attention too, perhaps that is why a passenger liner was shot down, so that the world could notice and pay attention to Putin's dirty plan.
 
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