NATO said Wednesday that Russia has amassed around 20,000 troops on Ukraine's border in a "dangerous" escalation of the current crisis. Describing the conflict as "fueled by Russia," NATO expressed concern that Moscow could use the excuse of a humanitarian or peacekeeping mission to send troops into eastern Ukraine.
"We're not going to guess what's on Russia's mind, but we can see what Russia is doing on the ground - and that is of great concern," NATO said in a statement. "This is a dangerous situation." It said the build-up "further escalates" the tenuous situation on the ground and "undermines efforts" at resolving the crisis between Russia and Ukraine. Russian President Vladimir Putin has triggered a tense showdown with the West by annexing Crimea and supporting pro-Moscow rebels in eastern Ukraine. Some of those militants are suspected in the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17.
- Cassandra Vinograd