Vladimir Putin readies for war as fleet of Russian warships enters sea off Arctic coast

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Vladimir Putin readies for war as fleet of Russian warships enters sea off Arctic coast

The Northern Fleet confirmed the news as part of Moscow's sweeping naval exercises with officials prepared to sit down for four-way talks in Paris

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The Northern Fleet confirmed the news as part of Moscow’s sweeping naval exercises with officials prepared to sit down for four-way talks in Paris on the conflict in east Ukraine. Russia also held military drills on Wednesday and deployed more forces and fighter jets to Belarus for exercises to take place next month. 

The Defence Ministry said Russian artillery forces in the southern Rostov region that borders Ukraine were set to practice firing later on Wednesday as part of a combat readiness inspection of the Southern Military District. 

It comes as Kremlin’s point man on Ukraine was due to meet officials from France, Germany and Ukraine for “Normandy format” talks in Paris against the backdrop of a Russian military buildup near Ukraine that has sparked fears of an invasion.

Russia insists it does not plan to invade, but the West has threatened severe economic penalties if that does happen. 

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