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US defence secretary: Russia ‘poised to strike’ Ukraine



The US defence secretary, Lloyd Austin, on Saturday appeared to compare Russia’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.

US defense secretary Lloyd Austin visited Vilnius, Lithuania on Saturday and warned Russia is “poised to strike” Ukraine.
 US defence secretary, Lloyd Austin, visited Vilnius, Lithuania on Saturday and warned Russia is ‘poised to strike’ Ukraine. Photograph: Valdemar Doveiko/EPA



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