The US claims that Russia is planning a false-flag operation to justify its invasion of Ukraine.
According to a US official, the operation would consist of sabotage attacks against pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine.
A US official said on Friday that Russia is planning to use a group of operatives to carry out a false-flag operation to justify an invasion of Ukraine.
A US official told Anadolu Agency that the operation would consist of sabotage attacks aimed at separatists in eastern Ukraine whom Russia has been supporting since 2014, citing intelligence developed by the US.
According to the official, the Russian operatives have already been prepositioned and have received explosives and urban warfare training.
“The US is concerned that the Russian government is planning an invasion into Ukraine, which could result in widespread human rights violations and war crimes if diplomacy fails to achieve its goals,” the official said.
During a briefing with reporters on Thursday, National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan alluded to the situation, saying that the US intelligence community has information that “Russia is laying the groundwork to have the option of fabricating a pretext for an invasion, including through sabotage activities and information operations.”
“In 2014, we saw this playbook.”
This playbook is being prepared once more.
And over the next 24 hours, the administration will have more details on what we believe to be a potential pretext to share with the press,” he said.
Russia appears to be setting the stage for an invasion, according to the US and its European allies, with a massive military buildup on its border with Ukraine that includes 100,000 troops.
Russia has denied that it is planning an invasion and claims that its troops are only there for training.
Russia is planning the false-flag operations “several weeks before a military invasion, which could begin between mid-January and mid-February,” according to an official who spoke to Anadolu Agency.
Pro-Russian “influence actors” are “already starting to fabricate Ukrainian provocations in state and social media to justify a Russian intervention and sow divisions in Ukraine,” according to the official.
“For example, Russian officials and influence actors are emphasizing narratives about the deterioration of human rights in Ukraine and Ukrainian leaders’ increased militancy,” the official said.
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