Britain will deploy a small number of military personnel to Ukraine

UkraineReutersMembers of the Ukrainian armed forces ride an armoured personnel carrier in Artemivsk, eastern Ukraine, February 24, 2015.

Prime Minister David Cameron said on Tuesday Britain would deploy military personnel to Ukraine in the next month to help train the Ukrainian army, warning that Moscow would move to destabilize other countries if left unchallenged, according to Reuters.

“Over the course of the next month we’re going to be deploying British service personnel to provide advice and a range of training, to tactical intelligence to logistics, to medical care,” Cameron told a committee of lawmakers in parliament.

“We’ll also be developing an infantry training program with Ukraine to improve the durability of their forces.”

The deployment of British service personnel to Ukraine would follow the proposed deployment of US trainers to western Ukraine this spring. Defence News reports that a still undetermined number of American soldiers will train four companies of the Ukrainian National Guard close to the city of Lviv, near the Polish border.

The US had previously deployed 200 paratroopers from the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team to Ukraine in September of 2014 as part of the joint military exercise Rapid Trident. The NATO training exercise involved soldiers from 14 countries along with NATO representatives.

The AP reports that Obama is increasingly considering sending military aid to Ukraine to help the military stave off any future assaults by Russian-backed separatists, although Germany and France continue to insist that any military intervention would only make the situation in Ukraine worse.

Britain’s decision to take a more direct approach towards the Ukraine crisis demonstrates the fractured opinions in Europe and within NATO towards how to best deal with Russia’s continued aggression.

Meanwhile, Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko is attending a major military expo in Abu Dhabi with the intent of procuring additional weaponry for his country’s fight against Russian-backed separatists.

Here’s a look at the current state of play between NATO and Russia:

(Reporting by Andrew Osborn and Kate Holton; Editing by Guy Faulconbridge)

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