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Denmark Enhances Combat Readiness to Support NATO Amid Ukraine Tensions

© Flickr / 7thArmyJMTCA soldier of the Royal Danish Army talks on the radio
A soldier of the Royal Danish Army talks on the radio  - Sputnik International, 1920, 08.02.2022
MURMANSK, Russia (Sputnik) - The Danish government decided to enhance the combat readiness of the armed forces to support the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) amid increasing tensions with Russia over Ukraine, the Danish Ministry of Defence said on Tuesday.
"The government has decided to take a number of necessary steps, as recommended by the Ministry of Defence, to increase the readiness of the armed forces to strengthen Denmark's ability to support NATO," the ministry said in a statement. 
According to the statement, the security situation in Europe has worsened as a result of alleged "unacceptable military pressure by Russia on Ukraine."
The ministry stressed that the Danish authorities will also increase the readiness of the country's battalion intended for the NATO response force to 1-5 days. Denmark will also enhance the readiness of the armed forces to repel air attacks. Two F-16 aircraft may be transferred to the Danish island of Bornholm, where an air base is located, if necessary.
"This has already taken place before, when activities of the Russian aircraft near Danish airspace increased," the defense ministry explained.
At the same time, the Danish armed forces will not carry out tasks at the border and protect civilian objects in Copenhagen, as it did before, the ministry added. According to the statement, these functions will be transferred to the Danish police or Home Guard.
Moscow has repeatedly stated that all flights of the Russian aerospace forces are carried out in strict accordance with international rules for the use of airspace.
In the past few months, the West and Ukraine have accused Russia of amassing troops near the Ukrainian border in alleged preparation for invasion. Russia has insisted that it has no intention of invading Ukraine, while stressing that it has the right to move its forces within its own territory.
Russia has also expressed concerns over NATO military activity near its borders and ongoing military support of Ukraine, including an increase in the number of Western instructors in its restive east. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that Moscow is not excluding that the "hysteria" around Ukraine fueled by the West is aimed at concealing Kiev's plans to sabotage the Minsk Agreements on Donbas.
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