We're ready, Ukrainian soldiers say on frontier with rebels

FILE PHOTO: A serviceman of the Ukrainian Armed Forces takes part in military drills at a training ground near the border with Russian-annexed Crimea in Kherson region, Ukraine, in this handout picture released by the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine press service November 17, 2021. Press Service of General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine/Handout via REUTERS

ZAITSEVE, Ukraine (Reuters) - Ukraine's military is ready and able to repel any attack, says Ukrainian soldier Oleksander, standing in a trench just a few hundred meters from pro-Russian separatists.

Ukraine's military intelligence said last week that Russia had more than 92,000 troops massed around Ukraine's borders and was preparing for an attack by the end of January or beginning of February.

Russia's foreign intelligence chief said on Saturday that such suggestions were "malicious U.S. propaganda".

But Ukrainian forces who control the borders are prepared for any escalation between the two sides.

"If there is an attack, we have means for defence. We are well-prepared. We're getting ready, better day by day, considering different options. We can repel an attack without big problems and we're not afraid of it," said Oleksander.

Ukraine, which wants to join the NATO military alliance, has blamed Moscow for supporting separatists in a conflict in its east since 2014.

Russia has said it suspects Ukraine of wanting to recapture separatist-controlled territory by force. President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said on Friday that Kyiv had no such plans and Russia's rhetoric opposing Ukraine's bid to join NATO was worrying.

Ukraine received a large consignment of U.S. ammunition and Javelin missiles earlier this year and soldiers say they also have mortars and Turkish attack drones.

"It's a bad idea to be afraid when someone comes to your house and you hide in your basement. It won't work. One should get up and go to fight," another soldier Vlad said.

"We're fighting here to not let them come, and then it's luck of a draw."

(Reporting by Anatoliy Stepanov; writing by Pavel Polityuk; editing by Christina Fincher)

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 46
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3
Join our Telegram channel to get our Evening Alerts and breaking news highlights

Next In World

UAE destroys 2 Houthi ballistic missiles, defence ministry says
Truckers fighting government vaccine mandate march to Canadian capital
U.S. orders departure of Ukraine embassy staff family members
Ecuador to increase police manpower in Guayaquil after killings
Italy's parliament starts voting for president in wide-open race
In Texas, driverless trucks are set to take over roads
Exclusive-Iran nuclear agreement unlikely without release of U.S. prisoners -Malley
Rich countries' access to foreign nurses during Omicron raises ethical concerns -group
Mexican officials find more than 3,000 migrants in two days
Rival Honduran lawmakers back different congressional heads in dispute with next president

Others Also Read