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Russia Accuses NATO Of Fanning 'Russophobic Hysteria'

Russia's has accused NATO of fanning "Russophobic hysteria" before the alliance's summit in Poland next month.

Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said on June 15 that the aim of anti-Russian statements by "individual representatives" of the alliance is to "deliberately whip up panic and maintain the image of a treacherous enemy in order to secure colossal military budgets."

Relations between NATO and Moscow have reached their lowest point since the Cold War over Russia's annexation of Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula in March 2014 and its support for separatists in the country's east.

Speaking on June 15 following a meeting of the alliance’s defense ministers in Brussels, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg called on Russia to withdraw its forces and military equipment from Ukraine and to stop supporting separatists.

Russian officials have repeatedly denied sending troops or military hardware to Ukraine despite evidence to the contrary.

Based on reporting by Reuters, AFP, Interfax, and TASS