The group of the seven richest democracies warns Russia that it will suffer severe consequences if it invades Ukraine. This is stated in the draft of the final communiqué from the meeting of the foreign ministers of the G-7 countries in Liverpool, Reuters reported.

The US intelligence service estimates that Russia may be planning an attack on several fronts against Ukraine next year, involving up to 175,000 troops. The Kremlin denies allegations that it is planning an attack and says the West is obsessed with Russophobia. Moscow claims that NATO enlargement threatens Russia and that Western allies have violated guarantees given to it after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, BTA reported. 

At a meeting in the northern British city of Liverpool, representatives of the G-7 countries said they were united in condemning the build-up of Russian troops to Ukraine and called on Moscow to de-escalate.

“Russia should have no doubt that future military aggression against Ukraine will have huge consequences and a high cost,” the draft final communiqué said.

“We reaffirm our unwavering commitment to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, as well as the right of each sovereign country to decide its own future,” the document said.

“We call on Russia to de-escalate tensions, follow diplomatic channels and fulfill international commitments to transparency in military activities,” the G-7 draft said.

“We reaffirm our support for the efforts of France and Germany in the Normandy format to achieve full implementation of the Minsk agreements in order to resolve the conflict in eastern Ukraine,” the G-7 said.

For Moscow, NATO’s growing rapprochement with Kiev and the nightmare, which it said would be the deployment of NATO missiles against Russia in Ukraine, are a “red line” that Russia will not allow to be crossed. Putin has demanded legally binding guarantees that NATO will not continue to expand eastward or deploy its weapons near Russian territory. Washington has repeatedly said that no country can veto Ukraine’s aspirations for NATO.

In 2014, Russia took over the Crimean peninsula from Ukraine, prompting the West to impose sanctions on Russia.