American intelligence learned of the Kremlin's plans to create a pretext for an invasion of Ukraine. One of the options is to produce propaganda videos showing a fake attack by the Ukrainian army on Donbas, US State Department spokesman Ned Price said.
Intelligence agencies believe the fabricated video could show the aftermath of an explosion targeting the Russian population, with corpses, blood and military equipment belonging to Ukraine or allied states.
"The video will be released to underscore a threat to Russia's security and to underpin military operations. This video, if released, could provide Putin the spark he needs to initiate and justify military operations against Ukraine," Price stressed.
He added that currently, the US does not know for sure whether Moscow will resort to this plan. Price explained that the American authorities decided to articulate this scenario in order to "dissuade" Moscow from executing it.
The Russian Federation responded to this. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov stated that such accusations against Russia had been made before, but none of the above mentioned happened.
Context. Earlier this week, US President Joe Biden ordered the deployment of 3,000 US troops to Eastern and Central Europe. Russia accused the US of fomenting tensions, despite the fact that Moscow pulled in 120,000 of its soldiers to the Ukrainian border.