The movement of Russian forces near the Ukrainian border has varied in intensity throughout the years of Russian military aggression since 2014, that is why Ukraine must always remain in combat readiness to fight back.
That’s according to Deputy Minister of Defense, Hanna Maliar, who spoke with Channel 24, Ukrinform reports citing the ministry's press service.
Commenting on public concerns over the recent reports of a Russian military buildup on Ukraine's border and a possible offensive by Russia, Maliar said: "Russia constantly seeks to conquer Ukraine, make us their satellite, get us back to the field of their absolute influence. This threat persists and varies in intensity, as does the movement of Russian troops around our borders. The intensity varies: it’s either the amassing or retreat from our border, reduction and then increase in the number of troops. Therefore, we must understand that we must always remain on guard to deliver a rebuff. "
According to the deputy minister, the information available to the Defense Ministry is provided by its Main Intelligence Directorate. Recently, the head of the country’s military intelligence, Brig. Gen. Kyrylo Budanov, told of Russia's destabilizing actions on the borders with Ukraine expected to be launched in December this year and January next year, which is also confirmed by Ukraine’s Western partners.
As previously reported, Prime Minister of Ukraine Denys Shmyhal in an interview with RFE/RL said the situation regarding the possible intensification of hostilities against Ukraine is being constantly monitored. According to the government chief, the situation on the border between Ukraine and Russia due to the amassing of Russian troops is "tense, but we’re seeing no signs of an offensive."
According to the Financial Times, Western intelligence sources said there Russia's move to destabilize Ukraine is highly likely this winter after Moscow deployed more than 90,000 troops to the border with Ukraine.
Dmitry Peskov, a spokesman for the Russian president, speaking on the air of one of Russia’s propaganda TV channels, commented on the reports of Russia preparations for invading Ukraine. Quoted by Interfax, Peskov decried allegations, claiming "artificial hysteria" and speaking of “provocation” Ukraine could stage.
On November 21, Kyrylo Budanov, head of Ukraine's Defense Ministry's Main Intelligence Directorate, told Military Times that Russia had amassed more than 92,000 troops near Ukraine's borders, adding he did not rule out an offensive that could be unleashed in late January-early February 2022.