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G7 warns Russia of 'massive consequences' if Ukraine is attacked

WorldDec 12, 2021 12:50PM ET
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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio, Canadian Foreign Minister Melanie Joly, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock,

By Alexander Ratz and Humeyra Pamuk

LIVERPOOL, England (Reuters) -Russia faces massive consequences and severe costs if President Vladimir Putin attacks Ukraine, the Group of Seven warned in a statement on Sunday.

U.S. intelligence assesses that Russia could be planning a multi-front offensive on Ukraine as early as next year, involving up to 175,000 troops.

The Kremlin denies it plans to invade and says the West is gripped by Russophobia. Moscow says the expansion of NATO threatens Russia and has contravened assurances given to it as the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991.

At a meeting in the northern English city of Liverpool, the G7 delegates said they were united in their condemnation of Russia's military build-up near Ukraine and they called on Moscow to de-escalate.

"Russia should be in no doubt that further military aggression against Ukraine would have massive consequences and severe cost in response," said the statement, which confirmed a draft version first reported by Reuters.

"We reaffirm our unwavering commitment to Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity, as well as the right of any sovereign state to determine its own future."

A statement released by the Russian Embassy in London on Saturday evening, before the joint G7 document was reported, said that Britain's frequent use of the phrase "Russian aggression" during the Liverpool meeting was misleading and designed to create a cause for the G7 to rally round.

"Russia has made numerous offers to NATO on ways to decrease tensions. The G7 forum could be an opportunity to discuss them, but so far we hear nothing but aggressive slogans," the embassy statement said.

'RED LINE'

For Moscow, the growing NATO embrace of a neighbouring former Soviet republic - and what it sees as the nightmare possibility of alliance missiles in Ukraine targeted against Russia - is a "red line" it will not allow to be crossed.

Putin has demanded legally binding security guarantees that NATO will not expand further east or place its weapons close to Russian territory; Washington has repeatedly said no country can veto Ukraine's NATO hopes.

In 2014 Russia seized the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea from Ukraine, prompting the West to impose sanctions on Russia.

The Kremlin on Sunday said that Putin told U.S. President Joe Biden that Russian troops posed no threat and that Moscow was being demonised for moving troops around its own territory. Putin and Biden have agreed to hold more talks, Moscow said.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said there were very serious conceptual differences between Russia and the United States on Moscow's "red lines".

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Russia could not exert its sphere of influence over Ukraine.

"That's what Russia is purporting to assert and if we let that go with impunity, then the entire system that provides for stability, prevents war from breaking out, is in danger," he told NBC News in a post-summit interview on Sunday.

The G7 comprises Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States, as well as a representative from the European Union.

"We call on Russia to de-escalate, pursue diplomatic channels and abide by its international commitments on transparency of military activities," the G7 said.

"We reconfirm our support for the efforts of France and Germany in the Normandy Format to achieve full implementation of the Minsk Agreements in order to resolve the conflict in eastern Ukraine."

G7 warns Russia of 'massive consequences' if Ukraine is attacked
 

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Comments (14)
Matt Brackley
Matt Brackley Dec 12, 2021 5:50PM ET
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G7 lost all its leverage when it initiated the social and economic policy related to covid.
David David
David9 Dec 12, 2021 5:22PM ET
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Using tough language never works... for once say, please don't do this. please let's sit down and discuss. please we understand your situation but let's find a solution... please... etc...
Bill Pulak
Bill Pulak Dec 12, 2021 5:22PM ET
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I hope this was sarcasm?
Sean Livingstone
Sean Livingstone Dec 12, 2021 5:17PM ET
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G7 and usa keep warning China and Russia about their invasion. But Russia has only taken Crimea and China haven't invaded a single country since usa took on and invaded many... Funny right?
Sean Livingstone
Sean Livingstone Dec 12, 2021 5:17PM ET
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Four guys can't face the truth. Look at how many innocents Americans killed since the 70s.
David David
David9 Dec 12, 2021 5:14PM ET
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I think the world only has one international body and that is the UN. No small group can say so and so... small groups are always made up of special interests... so it can never solve an international problem.
Roman Sheveloff
Roman Sheveloff Dec 12, 2021 4:58PM ET
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NATO has tens of thousands troops surrounding Russia. NATO bases are withing short flight. of Russia, NATO must be watching every inch of Russian space but that is not against UN charter. In. any case winter is coming and only Russia has enough for European consumption.
jj mm
jj mm Dec 12, 2021 2:13PM ET
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so funny...massive consequences
jake goldstein
jake goldstein Dec 12, 2021 1:25PM ET
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Time to buy as many  silver coins as possible.
Alan Rice
Alan Rice Dec 12, 2021 1:25PM ET
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Ha,ha .
New Jazenevd
New Jazenevd Dec 12, 2021 1:19PM ET
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Russia is a dictatorship, though lucky to have Putin, a benevolent variety, on top. This is different from more cannibalistic types of dictators that Russia and many other countries had in past. On the other hand, modern democracy is discredited by affinity to socialism to the point when a benevolent dictatorship, not associated with socialism, becomes competitive.
Akposiegbe Kelvin
Akposiegbe Kelvin Dec 12, 2021 1:19PM ET
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oh so you support what he's doing right? it's great to start war and ********innocent people while some senseless people will talk about buying gold and silver and not the life of people at stake.
New Jazenevd
New Jazenevd Dec 12, 2021 1:19PM ET
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Akposiegbe Kelvin  Cheap demagoguery. My message did not say that it is great to start a war and I support it etc. This is just your imagination or, better say, a lie. My message just explained the situation in real light. Consider handling truth at face value.
Chad RicherThanYou
Chad RicherThanYou Dec 12, 2021 1:13PM ET
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All talk. G7 won’t do anything.
Akposiegbe Kelvin
Akposiegbe Kelvin Dec 12, 2021 1:13PM ET
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At least a warning is something & you can't tell what they can do. you're not part of the G7 or are you?
Chad RicherThanYou
Chad RicherThanYou Dec 12, 2021 1:13PM ET
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Akposiegbe Kelvin okay let’s see thr G7 actually do something besides a verbal warning.
New Jazenevd
New Jazenevd Dec 12, 2021 1:10PM ET
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If Putin really wants to do this, then his time is now, because present US leadership shows extreme weakness and progressive senility. Russia may not get the same opportunity in future.
Empire Destroyer
Empire Destroyer Dec 12, 2021 12:44PM ET
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Wow massive consequences? LOL, better get my popcorn out as I watch them hold need conference after news conference to use harsh words and withdraw some out of date diplomats...
rizwan aslam
rizwan aslam Dec 12, 2021 11:21AM ET
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Funny
Billy Foos
Billy Foos Dec 12, 2021 11:18AM ET
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Russia is one of the few countries who arent playing along with the new world order agenda. Dont fear Russia.. Its a hoax
jason xx
jason xx Dec 12, 2021 6:04AM ET
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George Patton was right
 
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