US orders embassy families to leave Ukraine, says some staff may also leave

The US State Department said Americans should consider leaving Ukraine “now”, non-emergency diplomatic staff were allowed to depart and eligible family members were ordered to evacuate Sunday during the day. Russia continues to have a military presence along the country’s borders, the US State Department said.

While family members were asked to depart, others were advised not to travel, a senior state ministry official said.

In an advisory session Sunday night, the State Department issued its most urgent travel warning, described as Level 4, or “do not travel,” advising Americans not to travel to Ukraine amid Russia is amassing more than 100,000 troops at the border.

The adviser cited “increasing threats of Russian military action.”

It comes as President Joe Biden has said that military action, including invasion, may be imminent. But the senior State Department official said the advice should not be taken as an indication that the United States believes an invasion is certain in the coming hours or days.

“The US government will not be willing to evacuate our citizens,” the source said. “So the US citizen is currently present in Ukraine [should] plan accordingly, including taking advantage of commercial options, should they choose to leave the country, and commercial options are currently available. “

The official said today’s advice is not intended to affect US support for Ukraine.

“I just want to make it clear that these are prudent precautions that do not undermine our support or commitment to Ukraine,” the senior official said. “And we continue to live up to our commitment to Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.”

Lindsey Pipia contribute. US orders embassy families to leave Ukraine, says some staff may also leave

Jake Nichol

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