Threat of Russian invasion of Ukraine sparks global market sell-off
15 February 2022 | 8:26 am
Fears that a Russian invasion of Ukraine could be imminent have sent jitters across global stock markets. In Europe, Paris's CAC 40 and Germany's DAX both fell more than 3 percent at midday. Russia's main stock market also saw a sharp decline, adding to last week's sell-off. Plus, after two years grappling with changes to their careers, a growing number of people in France are turning to the real estate sector to start a completely new job.
With 100,000 troops amassed on its border with Ukraine, Russia is at a glaring advantage should a conflict arise. But Ukrainians from all walks of life are preparing for the worst, ready to step in at a moment's notice. DW's Mathias Bölinger reports.
How strong is the West's resolve when it comes to Ukraine? A steady diet of diplomacy is so far failing to lift the uncertainty over Vladimir Putin's true intentions when it comes to those 100,000 troops amassed at the border.
Germany has declined to join allies such as the US and UK in shipping weapons to Ukraine. The country faces an unpredictable buildup of Russian troops on its borders — and there is precedent for armed aggression.
Russia still seems to be beefing up the military presence on its border with Ukraine, while Kyiv has received military support from the US and the UK. Germany won't send weapons to Ukraine, saying that would only escalate the situation.
It's been a rollercoaster 24 hours on global stock markets, with huge swings on Wall Street and volatility hitting its highest level since October 2020. Investors are waiting for the decision from the US Federal Reserve on when it will start raising interest rates, but are also concerned about the rising tensions at Ukraine's border. Meanwhile, Bitcoin has slumped as low as $33,000, down over 50 percent from its peak in November. Our Business Editor Stephen Carroll has the details.
The West still doesn't know why war in Ukraine might happen, but it increasingly seems like it's happening. Kiev is trying to keep calm and rally support while being surrounded on three sides and being the recent victim of a cyberattack that feels like a dry run. Meanwhile, NATO countries are sending weapons and advisors while deploying fresh troops elsewhere in Eastern Europe. But that's small compared to the 100,000-plus forces amassed by Moscow.
Russia still seems to be beefing up the military presence on its border with Ukraine, while Kyiv has received military support from the US and and its NATO allies. Germany won't send weapons to Ukraine, saying that would only escalate the situation.
As Antony Blinken responds in writing to Russia's demands for an overhaul of Eastern Europe's security architecture, in the same breath he urges American citizens in Ukraine to leave. This Wednesday's "Normandy Format" talks, including France, Germany, Russia and Ukraine, serve as a reminder that Ukraine has already lost its territorial integrity – back in 2014 when Russia annexed Crimea and supported the insurgency that's raged since in the southeast. So what is Moscow after this time?
Joe Biden says he isn't ruling out personal sanctions on Russian President Vladimir Putin if he invades Ukraine. The threat from the US president comes as tensions between Moscow and the West continue to heat up. On Tuesday, the third instalment of US military equipment landed in Ukraine and more than 8,000 American troops stationed in Europe have been placed on standby.
With Russia massing 100,000 combat-ready troops just across Ukraine's eastern border, many fear an invasion is imminent. DW's Nick Connolly traveled to Ukraine's war-torn Donbass region and talked to residents and soldiers who live on the front line.
With concern still high over a potential war between Russia and Ukraine, NATO's deputy secretary general spoke to FRANCE 24. Mircea Geoana told our Europe editor Catherine Nicholson: "NATO will not get involved militarily in Ukraine – we support Ukraine in many other ways, individual allies support Ukraine. And in order to deter Russia from doing that ... is to really demonstrate to the leadership in the Kremlin that in a cost-benefit analysis, an additional military intervention in Ukraine is a net loss for Russia."
"Everything is on the table" regarding new EU sanctions on Russia - but "de-escalation through diplomacy" remains the bloc's priority in the Ukraine crisis. So says EU Justice Commissioner Didier Reynders in an in-depth interview with FRANCE 24's Europe Editor Catherine Nicholson. The former Belgian foreign minister said the European Commission is preparing measures that could include individual sanctions on "people involved in the possible aggression – such as freezing their assets or a travel ban", as well as what he described as "concrete economic sanctions: transfer of technologies from Europe and in co-ordination with the United States; energy; and maybe financial services".
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