The Russian army has moved artillery and rocket launchers into firing positions with the US believing that there could be an invasion by the end of the week, it is reported
Russian units near the Ukrainian border are moving into “attack positions”, according to a US official.
Some of Russia’s long-range artillery and rocket launchers have moved into firing positions threatening Ukraine, the source told CBS News.
They added that the US thinks Russia will attack Ukraine by the end of the week.
It comes after Foreign Secretary Liz Truss warned that Russia could launch an invasion of Ukraine “almost immediately”.
Boris Johnson urged President Vladimir Putin to step back from the “edge of a precipice” amid fears of an invasion within the next 48 hours.
More than 130,000 Russian troops are now massed on Ukraine’s border, although Putin insists he does not plan to invade.
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Meanwhile Ukrainian civilians, including women and children, are being taught how to handle weapons as they prepare to resist any attack.
As citizens took part in training drills in Ukraine, volunteer soldiers practiced with wooden assault rifles in preparation for a Russian assault.
The army reservists were run through exercises on Saturday, with some wearing trainers and sportswear as they aimed using mock weapons.
While the Territorial Defense force may stand little chance against the much bigger and better-equipped professional Russian army, reservists could be tasked with protecting civilian sites in the capital amid any conflict.
Once an attack does take place then there is little known about how this will unfold due to limited surveillance. The US will have no troops on the ground or reconnaissance planes while Russia cyber attacks are likely to cut communications, reported CBS.
US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan reportedly said : “We have seen over the course of the past 10 days a dramatic acceleration in the build-up of Russian forces and the disposition of those forces in such a way that they could launch a military action at any time.”
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Dr Paul Flenley, who is a senior lecturer in politics at the University of Portsmouth and an expert in Russian foreign policy, has said that the consequences of any invasion would have a negative impact on the way that Putin is viewed in his own country.
He told the express : “I think the Russian population has not been prepared for an invasion of Ukraine and the consequences.
“Psychologically, the consequences would be enormous.
“It wouldn’t fit well with the whole rhetoric of Ukrainians as our brothers, and they should be part of a wider association.
“An invasion of Ukraine and taking Kiev would just be a disaster for all that ideology that Putin has.”