WASHINGTON (WNI) — In response to Russia’s military buildup around Ukraine, the U.S. earlier this week put 8,500 troops on standby. President Biden told reporters that a small number of forces would be deployed to Europe in response to Russia's increased presence and to reassure allies.
Following the Pentagon’s confirmation that up to 8,500 troops would be placed on a “heightened alert” for a deployment within NATO, the U.S. signalled that a small contingency of troops would soon be heading to Eastern Europe. Joe Biden responding to reporters this week said that Poland and Romania, which are both NATO members, would be among the countries in Eastern Europe that would see increases in U.S. troop numbers.
NATO allies have indicated a willingness in recent days to increase troop numbers around NATO's Eastern flank. Britain and France have also confirmed that moving forces over to Eastern Europe including Romania and Bulgaria would be on the cards.
With Russia set to hold a number of naval drills involving some 140 ships in the next month, NATO allies have been increasing their military deployments including the provision of military equipment to Ukraine for defensive purposes.
In recent days, Russia has signalled it is not interested in a war, and continues to engage with NATO members. It is set to hold direct talks with Britain in February regarding the ongoing deployment of its forces around Crimea and Ukraine. Talks were also held this week in Paris between Russia, Ukraine, France and Germany, with a new round of discussions to be held in Berlin within 2 weeks.