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Russia 'poised to strike' Ukraine, says US defense secretary

Lloyd Austin warned Moscow could move on Ukraine at any time and he listed the kinds of military capabilities that Russia has massed and repositioned near Ukraine

Lloyd Austin

US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin speaks during a news conference in Vilnius, Lithuania (Photo: Reuters)

US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Saturday appeared to compare Russsia's military to a snake that was uncoiling and preparing to strike Ukraine after a massive military buildup that has stoked the biggest East-West crisis since the Cold War.

Austin, speaking on a trip to Lithuania, said he agreed with President Joe Biden's Friday assessment that Russian President Vladimir Putin has made a decision to stage a new invasion of Ukraine.

"They are uncoiling and are now poised to strike," Austin told a news conference in the Lithuanian capital, Vilnius, ahead of talks with increasingly anxious Baltic leaders.

Austin, a retired Army general,

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First Published: Feb 19 2022 | 8:23 PM IST

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