The Kremlin said on Monday that Russia was ready to mediate the migrant crisis between its close ally Belarus and the European Union, and that Moscow is already doing so to some extent.
The EU accused Belarus of organizing a “hybrid attack” against it by bringing in thousands of migrants, mainly from the Middle East, and pushing them to attempt to cross illegally into Poland.
The Kremlin has denied any Russian role in the crisis, but Putin offered to help resolve it on Sunday.
Asked Monday about Russia’s contribution, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov replied: “exclusively as a negotiating intermediary, which is partly (already) happening”.
In a conference call with reporters, Peskov also called a statement by the US State Department that Belarusian actions on the border with the EU were aimed at distracting from Russian military activities “false”. close to Ukraine.
Ukraine has said there are nearly 100,000 Russian troops near its border and the United States has issued warnings of possible Russian aggression.