Officials: Russia at 70 percent of Ukraine military buildup

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. officials say Russia has assembled at least 70 percent of the military firepower it likely intends to have in place by mid-month to give President Vladimir Putin the option of launching a full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

The officials discussed internal assessments of the Russian buildup on condition they not be identified.

They sketched out a series of indicators suggesting Putin intends an invasion in coming weeks, although the size and scale is unclear.

They said Russia has 83 battalion tactical groups along Ukraine’s borders, each with up to 1,000 troops, and more are expected to arrive soon.