Russia blames US for civilian deaths, Macron for increasing tensions

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By Creative Media News

  • Russia Blames US for Belgorod Attacks
  • France’s Aircraft Pledge Provokes Kremlin
  • Zelenskyy Warns of Wider Russian Threat

Russia has intensified its rhetoric against the West, alleging that the United States is responsible for the alleged use of US-supplied weapons against civilians on its soil in Ukraine, and accusing France of exacerbating tensions throughout Europe.

On Friday, Maria Zakharova, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, stated that the United States‘ decision to authorize Ukraine’s discharge of US-supplied weapons into Russia last week was “a confession… for the murder of children and women in the Belgorod region.

Antony Blinken, the US Secretary of State, confirmed on May 31 that President Joe Biden had consented to allow Ukraine to use the weapons for the first time to defend the Kharkiv region in the northeast, which is adjacent to Belgorod. Ukraine is still prohibited by the United States from launching weapons manufactured in the United States further into Russia.

Zakharova stated in her remarks that the purported attacks occurred in the Belgorod region last week.

She informed reporters that “fragments of HIMARS [rockets] will serve as direct proof,” but she did not provide any images of the rocket fragments or specify the number of individuals who were murdered in the purported incident.

Ukraine and the United States have yet to provide comments, and her assertions were unable to be independently verified.

In a separate report on Friday, the state-owned RIA Novosti news agency stated that Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov accused French President Emmanuel Macron of inflaming tensions throughout Europe after he pledged on Thursday to transfer Mirage fighter aircraft to Ukraine and assist in its pilot training.

“Macron declares readiness for France’s direct participation in the military conflict and demonstrates absolute support for the Kyiv regime,” Peskov was quoted as saying on the sidelines of the Saint Petersburg International Economic Forum. “We regard these statements as highly provocative, as they exacerbate tensions on the continent and are not conducive to any positive outcomes.”

In recent weeks, Russian President Vladimir Putin has issued a warning that the West is at risk of a global conflict if it continues to engage in the Ukraine conflict. He suggested to foreign editors on Wednesday that the possibility of increased tensions, and even “asymmetrical” military actions, could arise if Western countries such as the United States and Germany were to provide Ukraine with weaponry that was used on Russian soil.

He clarified that the utilization of specific weapons, such as sophisticated missile technology, would constitute participation in Russia’s conflict with Ukraine. “That would constitute their direct participation in the conflict against the Russian Federation, and we reserve the right to respond in the same manner,” he stated.

A continent in a state of conflict

In the meantime, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy expressed his gratitude to France for its assistance and expressed his expectation that French aircraft would soon be visible in Ukrainian skies, as per Macron’s declaration.

Zelenskyy, who had attended the D-Day commemorations in France the day before, stated at the French Parliament that Europe was a continent in conflict and cautioned that Russian aggression could extend beyond the country’s borders.

Zelenskyy stated in an address to French legislators, “Unfortunately, we are currently living in an era in which Europe is no longer a continent of peace.” “Once more, the bombing of Ukraine by Russia is resulting in the destruction of cities and the burning of villages in Europe,” he stated.

“This is currently directed at Ukraine.” However, this could be directed at other nations tomorrow, and the aggression’s trajectory is already evident—the Baltic countries, Poland, and the Balkans—he added.

Zelenskyy contended that Russia’s military operations in Syria and its expanding presence in the Sahel region of Africa were insufficient, even in Europe.

The Ukrainian president expressed his optimism that a summit hosted by Switzerland this month on the topic of bringing peace to Ukraine could expedite an equitable resolution to the conflict, as he believed that the world was too “afraid” to respond forcefully to Putin.

Drone transfers

The war that commenced in February 2022, when Russia launched a full-scale invasion of neighbouring Ukraine, was still ongoing when he made these comments.

On Telegram, the Ukrainian Air Force reported that Moscow’s forces had launched 53 combat drones and five cruise missiles at Ukraine. The air defences intercepted all but five of the drones.

Additionally, Ukrainian officials reported that drone attacks overnight resulted in damage in Kyiv, including a fire at an industrial facility in the vicinity of the capital. Additionally, the city of Odesa and other regions of Ukraine were affected.

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Vyacheslav Gladkov, the Governor of Belgorod in Russia, reported that a woman was slain in a Ukrainian drone attack that struck a vehicle she was travelling in with her parents.

The Russian Defence Ministry accused Ukrainian forces of firing five US-supplied ATACMS missiles in an attack that it claimed had wounded 20 persons, including children, in the Russian-controlled eastern Ukrainian city of Luhansk.

In a statement, the ministry claimed that four of the five missiles were intercepted by air defence systems. However, it also claimed that one of the missiles had caused damage to two residential apartment buildings, which it claimed was intentional.

Ukraine declined to provide an immediate response regarding the purported assaults.

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