EU’s Borrell says Brussels working to forestall conflict between Russia, Ukraine

Rome [Italy]: The European Union is making a diplomatic effort to prevent an escalation of tensions on the border between Russia and Ukraine, EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell has said.
Over the past several weeks, Ukraine and some Western countries have expressed concern about the alleged increase in what they characterize as “aggressive actions” by Russia on their border. Moscow, for its part, has rejected the accusations by saying it is moving troops within its own territory and at its own discretion. “We are using our diplomatic capacity to let Russia know that this [alleged attack] would be a grave violation of international law,” Borrell said in an interview with Italian newspaper La Repubblica, published late on Saturday.
According to the EU official, at this stage, it is important to show Moscow “the range of possible outcomes.”
“We are working to avoid the crisis, but in the face of any unforeseen circumstances, the EU will steadfastly support Ukraine,” Borrell stated, while also saying that the upcoming Eastern Partnership summit in Brussels will provide an opportunity for the bloc to demonstrate its commitment.
Relations between Moscow and Kiev deteriorated Crimea’s reunification with Russia in 2014 and the ongoing armed conflict in Donbas. In January 2015, the Ukrainian parliament adopted a statement calling Russia an “aggressor country.” Russia denies the accusations of the Ukrainian party and calls them unacceptable.

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