November 23, 2014
WASHINGTON (AP) - The American general who commands all NATO forces in Europe says Russia has 40,000 troops along the border with neighboring Ukraine, and that they are capable of attacking by land and air on 12 hours' notice.
In remarks to The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and the Reuters news agency, Air Force Gen. Philip M. Breedlove said that despite Russian claims it was beginning to withdraw troops, it is not yet apparent that any significant number are leaving the border area.
Breedlove statements were confirmed Wednesday by a U.S. defense official in Brussels who is familiar with the general's comments.
According to the official, Breedlove said the Russian force is well-equipped and capable of achieving Russian military objectives in Ukraine or beyond within three to five days.
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