Russia’s Foreign Ministry warned on Thursday that the Ukrainian government is planning to launch an offensive in Donbass with the goal of reaching the Russian border.

The ministry’s spokesperson Maria Zakharova claimed Kiev is “planning to stage an armed provocation on the contact line in the coming days” as a pretext to use the martial law. which is currently in effect in the region’s close to the Russian border, for “organizing a swift offensive in the Mariupol sector, seizing areas adjoining the Sea of Azov, and reaching the Russian border.” Zakharova reiterated Moscow’s opinion that Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is staging provocations as he needs “a sharp escalation” in order to “stop the continuing decline of his popularity rating” and boost his chances in the upcoming election.

Poroshenko introduced a 30-day martial law in November after Russia seized Ukrainian ships and arrested 24 sailors which attempted to sail to the port of Mariupol through the Kerch Strait, accusing them of violating the country’s state border.

the chocolatier acting as president

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