Ukraine Chief Of Staff Admits No Russian Troops In Ukraine

Redheart

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A strange admission. How is that Poroshenko and the chief of staff aren't singing from the same songsheet? Is the war creating a schism between the military and government?

Ukraine chief of staff ‘thwarts Western allegations’ by admitting no combat with Russian troops — RT News

The Ukraine army’s chief of staff has admitted that Kiev troops are not engaged in combat with Russian units, thereby thwarting all Western allegations of Moscow's “military invasion,” said Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov.

“Yesterday afternoon the Chief of the General Staff – Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine – Viktor Muzhenko officially acknowledged during a briefing for foreign military attachées that Russian troops are not involved in the fighting in the country's southeast,” Konashenkov said on Friday.

Given the fact that Muzhenko directly supervises military operations in the southeast, “his statement is a legal fact, which thwarts numerous accusations made by NATO and Western states” concerning Russia's alleged “military invasion” in Ukraine, the spokesman added.

The Russian Defense Ministry, however, was puzzled by a statement from Muzhenko's subordinate, Sergey Galushko, made several hours later. According to Galushko – an employee of the Department of Information Technology – Russian troops are located in the so-called “second echelon.”

On Thursday, Muzhenko said “the Ukrainian army is not engaged in combat operations against Russian units.” He added, however, that he had information about Russian individuals fighting in the country’s east. He also said the Ukrainian army has everything it needs to drive off armed units in Donbass. His speech was aired by Ukraine's Channel 5 television, owned by President Petro Poroshenko.

Ukrainian servicemen sit atop armoured personnel carriers (APC) (Reuters / Valentyn Ogirenko)

Commenting on Muzhenko’s statement, Galushko said that reporters were only allowed at the open part of the meeting. He said that later, during the closed part, the chief of general staff said that Russian units are “in the second tier.”

Muzhenko himself did not elaborate on the initial statement.

Kiev began a military assault on eastern Ukraine's Donetsk and Lugansk regions in April 2014, after they refused to recognize the country’s new, coup-imposed authorities. According to UN estimates, more than 5,000 people have died as a result of the conflict.

Since the start of Kiev’s military operation, Ukraine and Western states have repeatedly alleged that Russia has a military presence in the country's east. Moscow has refuted those claims on multiple occasions.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov reiterated Moscow’s arguments on Wednesday, calling on those who believe the opposite to prove their point. “I say it every time: if you are so sure in stating that, confirm it with facts. But no one can or wants to provide them,” he said.

The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) said it has not registered any movement of military vehicles at the Russia-Ukraine border checkpoints it observes, according to a statement made on January 22.
 
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Russia is smart enough not to get caught with actual Russian troops inside Ukraine. They are probably doing more covert stuff like supplying Russian sympathizers in Ukraine with weapons, cause trouble in Crimean.

I think Ukraine is attempting to make a peace offering with Russia so they can open up some sort of peace talks. Ukraine needs Russian oil and natural gas.
 
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There is a difference between pro-Russian and actual Russian troops and no government will admit to sending troops there as they have supporters already so they don't need to. Basically it seems Russia is letting them try to win, but why should they stop them? That can't anyhow as that is what the pro- Russians want to do and what can Putin say?
"Yes, that's great you want to be back in Mother Russia, but you are Ukranian now so stop fighting." It is their war and Russia may or may not be helping them, but even if they weren't I am sure the pro-Russians would find a way to gain assistance whether approved by Russia or not.
 

Redheart

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Russia admits that there are Russian volunteers helping the rebels in Ukraine. How would you tell the difference between one who is a volunteer and regular troops disguised as a volunteer? So if someone who claims he's no taffiliated with the Russian army/miltary in any way is fighting in Ukraine, Russia gets away with that. Of course that means the force in Ukraine will be somewhat weaker but nonetheless experienced enough to cause problems for the Ukrainian army.
How Russians Are Sent to Fight in Ukraine

Russian vets are selected and paid to "volunteer" by the Russian government.