As Ukraine tensions mount, Putin says Russia has 'every right' to 'react harshly to unfriendly steps'

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his country has "every right" to "react harshly to unfriendly steps" as the US and NATO continue to pressure Moscow over its aggression towards Ukraine. The US and its allies have warned Russia about the consequences of further hostilities amid its continued military buildup near the Ukraine border -- a move that US intelligence has assessed as preparation for a full-scale invasion in early 2022.
Speaking on Tuesday, NATO's Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that while the alliance is ready to engage in "meaningful dialogue" with Russia, it will continue to support Ukraine "politically and practically." Meanwhile, US Assistant Secretary of State for Europe Karen Donfried, the Biden administration's top diplomat for Europe, said the US and Europe were ready to act immediately if Russia increased aggression towards Ukraine in the coming days.
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