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Ukraine war: EU official says ‘Russia has changed ‘special operation’ into war with NATO and West’

WION logo WION 27-01-2023 Srishti Sisodia
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Disclaimer: A number of claims and counterclaims are being made on the Ukraine-Russia conflict on the ground and online. While WION takes utmost care to accurately report this developing news story, we cannot independently verify the authenticity of all statements, photos and videos.

The dynamics of the 11-month-old Russia-Ukraine war appear to be shifting gradually from its initial state and is taking an indirect form of a global conflict. A European Union official however went ahead to claim that Moscow has taken the war to a different level from the initial 'special operation' and is now at "war against NATO and the West". 

The remarks were made after the United States and Germany agreed to send powerful tanks to help Ukraine in its fight against Russia after much debate. Besides, the West has also provided Kyiv with a fresh package of advanced and sophisticated weapons. 

Stefano Sannino, who is the secretary general of the European Union's European External Action Service, said that Russia has taken the war to "a different stage" by its continuous, indiscriminate attacks on civilian target in Ukraine. Sannino insinuated that Russia has apparently triggered Germany and the United States to send advanced tanks to Ukraine. 

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As quoted by Radio Free Europe, Sannino told reporters in Tokyo that Putin had "moved from the concept of a special operation to a concept now of a war against NATO and the West." Sannino alleged that Moscow is engaging in "indiscriminate attacks" on civilians and cities and is no longer targeting just military positions. 

The EU official backed the proposed supply of tanks to Ukraine saying that they will be used for a counter-offensive and are not intended for an attack. 

"I think that this latest development in terms of arms supply is just an evolution of the situation and of the way Russia started moving the war into a different stage," he said. 

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West to send tanks to Ukraine 

For a very long time, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky urged the West to send tanks and long-range missiles to strike deep inside Russian territories. 

The West initially hesitated to engage in direct conflict with Russia and Moscow had also warned that the supply of powerful weapons by West will be considered a provocation. 

But, the West has finally relented to the demand as consensus grew among countries. Earlier this week, Germany agreed to supply 14 powerful Leopard tanks to Ukraine amid intense pressure from other European counties. Notably, the German-made Leopard 2 battle tanks are considered one of the best-performing tank models worldwide. 

Canada said that it will also supply heavy tanks to Ukraine, with a shipment of four fully operational Leopards. Norway also said it would send Leopard 2 tanks to the war-torn nation. 

US President Joe Biden also announced that his administration will send 31 top-of-the-line M1 Abrams battle tanks to Ukraine, although delivery may not be very soon. The countries have also said that they would train Ukrainian forces for using the advanced tanks.


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