Ukraine is at the center of a crisis that arose months ago between Moscow and the West

Tensions have risen in recent months over Ukraine, which the West accuses Russia of planning to launch an "imminent" military attack on it.

A row has erupted between Kiev and Moscow since Russia annexed Ukraine's Crimea peninsula in 2014, and a war ensued in eastern Ukraine with pro-Russian separatists, whose military sponsor the Kremlin is, despite Moscow's denials.

On November 10, 2021, Washington requested clarification from Russia regarding the “extraordinary” movements of its forces on the Ukrainian border.

In April, Moscow had mobilized about 100,000 soldiers on the border.

For his part, Russian President Vladimir Putin accused the West of delivering weapons to Kiev and of conducting "provocative" military exercises in the Black Sea and near the border.

On November 28, Ukraine confirmed that Russia had massed some 92,000 troops on its border.

In return, the Russian authorities accused Ukraine of massing its forces in the east of the country.

On December 7, US President Joe Biden threatened Vladimir Putin with "severe economic sanctions" in the event of an invasion of Ukraine, during a virtual bilateral summit.

Moscow revealed two draft treaties that prohibit any NATO expansion, especially to annex Ukraine, as well as the withdrawal of NATO forces from the countries of the former Soviet Union.

On January 18, after fruitless talks in Geneva and then in Brussels, Moscow deployed troops to Belarus.

Washington allocated an additional $200 million in security assistance to Ukraine and allowed the Baltic states to hand over US weapons to Kiev.

On January 24, NATO announced that it was sending ships and combat aircraft to reinforce its defenses in Eastern Europe. Washington has put up to 8,500 soldiers on alert.

The Kremlin accused Washington of causing "exacerbation of tension" and soon after held new exercises near Ukraine and in Crimea.

On December 26, the United States rejected Moscow's basic demands.

Russian and Ukrainian envoys met in Paris, the French and German mediators, in an effort to restart the peace process in eastern Ukraine.

On January 27, China backed Moscow's "reasonable security concerns."

On February 2, Washington sent an additional 3,000 troops to Eastern Europe to defend NATO member states.

On February 7, Vladimir Putin said he was ready for "compromises" after a long meeting in the Kremlin with French President Emmanuel Macron, whose country holds the European Union's rotating presidency.

On February 10, Russian and Belarusian forces began major maneuvers in Belarus.

On February 11, NATO insisted that there was a "real danger of a new armed conflict" in Europe, while several countries called on their nationals to leave Ukraine as soon as possible.

For the Kremlin, the previous day's discussions that brought together Russia, Ukraine, Germany and France in Berlin, had "no result".

The United States confirmed that a Russian invasion of Ukraine could happen "at any time" and decided to send an additional 3,000 troops to Poland.

On February 12, Ukraine considered US warnings of a possible Russian invasion "panic."

Moscow, which started new naval exercises in the Black Sea, announced that it will reduce the number of its diplomatic staff there.

Biden has warned his Russian counterpart of "significant and immediate costs" to Moscow if Russia invades Ukraine.

On February 13, Biden and his Ukrainian counterpart agreed to continue "diplomacy" and "deterrence" against Moscow.

Olaf Scholz warned that Western sanctions would be "immediate" if Russia invaded Ukraine.

On February 14, the United States decided to move its embassy from Kiev to Lviv in the west of the country.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson called on Vladimir Putin to step back from "the brink of the abyss", saying that the situation is "very, very dangerous" in light of the risk of Ukraine being invaded by Russia "in the next 48 hours".

Sergey Lavrov offered Vladimir Putin to “extend and expand” the dialogue with the Westerners, estimating that there is “always a chance” to reach a solution that satisfies all parties.

On February 15, the Kremlin confirmed the start of a "partial withdrawal" of Russian forces stationed near the Ukrainian border.

On February 16, NATO announced that it did not see any sign of reducing tension, stressing, like Washington, that Moscow, on the contrary, was seeking to strengthen its military presence.

On February 17, exchanges of heavy weapons fire intensified along the front line between pro-Russian separatists and Ukrainian forces.

Biden warned that Russia may launch an attack "in the coming days", while Moscow has deployed 150,000 troops on Ukraine's borders, according to US intelligence services.

In return, Moscow announced military withdrawals.

On February 18, the separatists ordered the evacuation of civilians to Russia.

Anthony Blinken denounced Moscow's "provocations" to justify the attack.

On February 19, the Ukrainian army announced the killing of two soldiers.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky offered to hold a meeting with Putin, who was at the same time supervising "strategic" exercises that included the launch of hypersonic missiles.

Washington announced that Russian forces were "preparing to launch a strike", while France and Germany urged their nationals to leave Ukraine.

On February 20, Belarus announced the continuation of joint military exercises with Russia on its territory.

On February 21, the Elysee Palace announced that the Russian and American presidents had agreed in principle to his offer of a summit, but the Kremlin considered such a meeting “premature.”

The Russian army announced that it had killed five "saboteurs" on its territory who came from Ukraine and captured a Ukrainian soldier, an accusation denied by Kiev.

Putin considered that the peace process in the conflict in Ukraine has no chances.

Kiev announced the killing of two Ukrainian soldiers and a civilian in the bombing operations carried out by separatists.

Putin announced Russia's recognition of the independence of the breakaway regions of Donetsk and Luhansk in eastern Ukraine, in a speech on state television, despite warnings from the West that it would expose Russia to severe sanctions.

State television broadcast footage showing him signing cooperation agreements with the leaders of the two regions in the Kremlin.


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