advertisement

A Russian diplomat on Sunday said Moscow does not trust “U.S. and British intelligence” while repeating Russia’s claim that it has no plans to invade Ukraine.

Sky News host Trevor Phillips asked Deputy Russian Ambassador to the U.N. Dmitry Polyanskiy why the Kremlin has amassed 150,000 troops at the Ukrainian border if Moscow does not plan to invade its neighbor.

“First of all, who counted them? Where do you take this figure 150,000? I remember it was 100,000, then it was 120,000, now it is 150,000, some people say 190,000,” Polyanskiy said. “I admit inflation is very high here in New York. We see it in the prices, but in the number of soldiers…”

advertisement

Phillips pushed back on Polyanskiy’s remarks, citing satellite imagery from Western governments showing an increase in Russia’s military presence at the border.

“We don’t trust the U.S. and British intelligence, they let us down, the whole world, on many occasions. Enough to remember the weapons of mass destruction in Iraq,” Polyanskiy replied.

The diplomat repeated Moscow’s frequent argument that it is allowed to place its troops wherever it wishes within its own borders. Phillips asked if Moscow would have the same “relaxed” attitude if Ukraine similarly amassed a military presence along its border with Russia.

Polyanskiy claimed that Ukraine has already amassed 120,000 soldiers along contact lines in Donbass and alleged that the Ukrainian military had begun shelling the region. Hundreds of artillery shells exploded along contact lines between Ukrainian soldiers and Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine over the weekend, resulting in thousands of Ukrainians being evacuated to Russia.