Several Countries Urge Nationals to Leave Ukraine

The United States has escalated its warnings about a possible Russian invasion of Ukraine that could happen within days, with multiple other countries urging its citizens to leave the disputed country.

National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan warned Friday that a Russian invasion could come before the end of the Winter Olympics on Feb. 20, urging Americans in Ukraine to leave within the next 48 hours.

“I will not comment on the details of our intelligence information, but I do want to be clear: It could begin during the Olympics, despite a lot of speculation that it would only happen after the Olympics,” Sullivan told a briefing.

The U.K. and Israel had also urged its citizens to leave Ukraine. Britain had released a high alert travel advisory on Friday discouraging all travel to the country, while Israel said that it will evacuate relatives of its embassy staff in Kyiv.

Both the U.S. and U.K. said that there is no guarantee of an evacuation should a major conflict occur.

Worries of a war remain heightened as more than 100,000 Russian troops remain stationed near its shared border with Ukraine. Russian President Vladimir Putin has repeatedly denied plans of an invasion, accusing Western countries of using the situation as “pretext” for increasing military presence near Russia.

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