EU sees Putin’s mobilization as a sign of “desperation” and Russian escalation

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The European Union said Wednesday that Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decision to decree a “partial mobilization” of the population in the face of the war in Ukraine shows that he wants an “escalation” of the conflict and is a sign of Russia’s “desperation.”

“This is just another proof that Putin is not interested in peace, but in escalating his war of aggression,” EU foreign affairs spokesman Peter Stano assessed at a press conference from Brussels.

For EU diplomacy, the mobilization of reservists by Russia is evidence of the Kremlin’s “desperation” with the march of the invasion of Ukraine and a sign that Putin “is only interested in continuing the war” and in deepening its consequences such as the energy and food crisis.

The activities related to the Russian military mobilization announced by Putin will start this very Wednesday and, in principle, only reservists, mainly those with experience, will be called up. This is the main movement of Russian troops since he attacked Ukraine last February.

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Likewise, the spokesman for the EU High Representative for Foreign Policy, Josep Borrell, has reproached that the negative consequences of the war are felt all over the world and that the Russian president’s announcement only contributes to deepen the crisis.

“The aggression has consequences also for the Russian population and is not only an attack not only against Ukraine, but against the principles of the international community and to the countries subscribing to the principles of sovereignty and integrity recognized by the United Nations,” he stressed.

On the option of redoubling sanctions against Russia, Stano pointed out that the steps taken by Moscow, with the announcement of a partial mobilization, the holding of accession referendums in the occupied areas or the discovery of mass graves in Izium, “will find a response from the EU” and indicated that the member states of the bloc are already in contact in the margins of the UN General Assembly to study possible actions.

In the same vein, the president of the European Council, Charles Michel, has regretted that the Kremlin’s announcement comes in the middle of a diplomatic meeting in New York where countries are working for cooperation, security and prosperity.

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“In this war there is only one aggressor, Russia, and one aggressed country, Ukraine. The EU’s support for Ukraine will remain firm,” the former Belgian prime minister stressed in a message on his Twitter profile.


Putin’s message also has implications on nuclear security, after he has assured that the West’s “nuclear blackmail” against Moscow can be reversed and “the wind could blow in their direction”. The Russian leader has alleged that the attacks in the area of the Zaporiyia nuclear power plant are incited by the West and threaten a nuclear catastrophe.

In this regard, the spokesman for EU diplomacy has reiterated that Russia “plays with nuclear safety” and that the Kremlin uses these elements as part of “its arsenal of terror” in the context of the invasion of Ukraine.

For Stano this situation shows how far Putin is willing to go in his offensive against the neighboring country. “What is more worrying is that any confrontation with nuclear weapons will affect the entire territory of Ukraine, the European and Asian space and will have unpredictable consequences throughout the world,” he warned, calling for an effort at the international level to put pressure on Moscow in this regard.

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