Putin warns NATO against troop deployment in Ukraine

Russian President Vladimir Putin has warned the US-led NATO military alliance against the deployment of troops in Ukraine, saying such a move would “be one step shy of a full-scale World War III”.

It is no secret that fighters from NATO nations are present on the ground in Ukraine, he claimed while speaking to his supporters and the media on early Monday, 18 March after his landslide presidential election victory.

Putin stressed that Moscow is “well aware of the US-led military bloc’s push to deploy troops in Ukraine”.

“We hear both French and English speech there. There is nothing good in this, first of all for them, because they die there and in large numbers,” he was quoted by Russian media as saying.

“Anything is possible in the modern world… But everyone knows that this would be one step shy of a full-scale World War III. I don’t think that anyone is interested in that,” Putin said.

Commenting on French President Emmanuel Macron’s earlier remarks which suggested that the West “cannot exclude” the possibility of sending soldiers to aid Ukraine, he said Russia wants France “not to escalate the conflict but to help find a peaceful solution to hostilities”.

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