He said this in Brussels on Wednesday, April 14, at a joint press conference with U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg following a meeting of the North Atlantic Council, according to an Ukrinform correspondent.
"What was striking to me was, in the North Atlantic Council meeting, listening to every single ally, all 30 of us, express those concerns and a determination to see Russia take steps to de-escalate the tensions that it is creating," Blinken said.
He said that the United States was deeply concerned about Russia's ongoing aggressive actions and rhetoric directed at Ukraine.
"We're watching very closely, as we see very credible reports of this troop buildup in occupied Crimea and around Ukraine's borders," Blinken said, adding this has reached levels not seen since Russia's invasion in 2014.
"We've also seen continued attacks by Russian-led forces at the line of contact in eastern Ukraine that, at least as of this morning, had resulted in 12 Ukrainian personnel killed since the last week in March," he said.
But at the same time, according to him, Ukraine has demonstrated real restraint in the face of Russian provocations.
"That's why we're focused on this. That's why the alliance is concerned and we are united in that concern," Blinken said.
Photo: Getty Images
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