Ukraine conflict 'no longer a small-scale war' says Gao
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This comes as nine people are reported dead after a Russian strike on a military base near the Ukrainian border with Poland – a NATO member and EU state. Ukrainian authorities said that up to 30 missiles were launched at the facility at Yavoriv, injuring 57 people.
Former Ukrainian prime minister, Volodymyr Groysman, has issued an ominous warning to the West that assaults such as these could be steps leading Russian forces further west than Ukraine’s borders.
Mr Groysman, 44, said: “For now, he is being stalled by the Ukrainian heroes, by the Ukrainian troops.
“But, unfortunately, it can change if there is no resolve on behalf of the European capitals.
“I would very much like to avoid the scenario of the Second World War, when the European capitals were subject to bombardments.”
He added: “There is still a window of opportunity and the chance for us to stop him here in Ukraine.”
He said he was “100 percent sure” that Ukraine fell to Russian forces, the West would suddenly see that Vladimir Putin’s assault was not contained to controlling Kyiv.
He told the Telegraph: “If Ukraine falls, it will mean that Putin’s troops will be on the border of the EU and Nato, and then in a year – or maybe sooner, maybe later – he will intervene in the Baltic states and Poland, for instance.
“So what’s going to happen then? [Some] European leaders will still be able to say, ‘Look, the war might become even bigger, so let’s wait [so] it doesn’t become a large-scale war, because it’s still only about Lithuania and Estonia and Poland, but it’s not about France or Great Britain or Germany.’”
Mr Groysman spoke of Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelensky’s, insistence that the West commit to a NATO-enforced no-fly zone over Ukraine.
This is something the West has been unwilling to put into practice, with US President Joe Biden warning it would mean a kickstart to World War 3.
But World War 3, Mr Groysman continued, may have already begun.
He said: “First and foremost, the Western democratic world should unite in order to stop this threat because this threat originating from Putin will go beyond Ukraine.
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“It already goes beyond Ukraine. I think that he has started World War Three.
“It has already started in Ukraine.
“It is not against Ukraine, it is against the Western world.”
Following the Russian strike on the Ukrainian military base west of the city of Lviv on Sunday morning, Ukraine’s defence minister Oleksii Reznikov reiterated the Ukrainian leadership’s plea for a no-fly zone.
He tweeted: “Russia has attacked the International Center for Peacekeeping and Security near Lviv.
“Foreign instructors work here.
“Information about the victims is being clarified.
“This is new terrorist attack on peace and security near the EU-NATO border.
“Action must be taken to stop this. Close the sky!”
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