Nearly half of Russian forces surrounding Ukraine are in attack position, according to a US defense official familiar with the latest assessment.
The number of battalion tactical groups has swelled to approximately 120-125. A battalion tactical group usually comprises 1,000 troops.
The official said the Russian military has continued to move forces toward the border, and within the last 48 hours, the number of forces in attack position has reached 40-50%.
At the same time, the Russian destabilization campaign has begun, the official said, with Russia accusing Ukraine of genocide in Donbas, conducting false flag operations, and more.
On Friday, a military vehicle exploded in the city of Donetsk in eastern Ukraine near the Government House building, the headquarters of the self-declared Donetsk People’s Republic.
An advisor to Ukraine’s Interior Minister, Anton Gerashchenko, called it a “staging and a provocation.”
Earlier Friday: The Donetsk People’s Republic and the Luhansk People’s Republic, two self-governed regions in eastern Ukraine controlled by Russian-backed separatists, organized the evacuation of civilians to Russia.
Russia promised each refugee would receive 10,000 rubles (around $130) upon arrival in the Rostov region of the country.