The United States has issued a new warning to the Ukrainian government that the latest intelligence points to a full-scale Russian invasion imminently, according to Ukrainian, US and Western officials familiar with the matter.
The new warning was conveyed on Tuesday morning local Kyiv time, according to three of the sources.
A senior Ukrainian official said Ukraine has not verified the intelligence and noted that the United States has issued similar warnings before for assaults that ultimately did not materialize.
NATO allies have been given a similar intelligence assessment warning of an imminent attack, according to a NATO military official. The official cautions that “no one knows for sure” what Putin is going to do.
News of the warning comes as the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has called for a state of emergency to be imposed across the country starting at midnight tonight in Ukraine.
Of particular concern, the US warned, is the major northeastern city of Kharkiv, according to the senior Ukrainian official and a Western official familiar with the intelligence. The Ukrainian foreign minister said on Tuesday there were no plans to evacuate the city.
“We do not have such plans,” Dmytro Kuleba said during a press conference in Washington alongside US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.
Social media videos geolocated and analyzed by CNN over the past several days show a continuing buildup of armor and support vehicles massing less than 30 kilometers (about 18 miles) across the border in Russia.
US officials have said that they anticipate both a ground invasion and airstrikes should Russia launch an attack.
“Russian missiles and bombs will drop across Ukraine. Communications will be jammed. Cyberattacks will shut down key Ukrainian institutions,” Blinken said last week before the UN Security Council, describing how the US believed a Russian attack on Ukraine would unfold.
“After that, Russian tanks and soldiers will advance on key targets that have already been identified and mapped out in detailed plans.”
Newsweek first reported this story.