US Embassy in Kiev, Ukraine
US Embassy in Kiev, UkraineiStock

The United States on Thursday urged Americans in Ukraine to leave immediately due to “increased threats of Russian military action” against Ukraine.

“Do not travel to Ukraine due to the increased threats of Russian military action and COVID-19; those in Ukraine should depart now via commercial or private means,” said a travel advisory on the website of the State Department.

“If remaining in Ukraine, exercise increased caution due to crime, civil unrest, and potential combat operations should Russia take military action. Some areas have increased risk,” it added.

“There are continued reports of a Russian military build-up on the border with Ukraine, indicating potential for significant military action against Ukraine. The security conditions, particularly along Ukraine’s borders, in Russia-occupied Crimea, and in Russia-controlled eastern Ukraine, are unpredictable and can deteriorate with little notice. Demonstrations, which have turned violent at times, regularly occur throughout Ukraine, including in Kiev.”

“US citizens in Ukraine should be aware that the US government will not be able to evacuate US citizens in the event of Russian military action anywhere in Ukraine. Military action may commence at any time and without warning and would also severely impact the US Embassy’s ability to provide consular services, including assistance to US citizens in departing Ukraine,” the advisory warns.

The warning comes amid continued tensions between Russia and Ukraine, after Russia amassed tens of thousands of troops on its border with Ukraine.

US President Joe Biden warned Ukraine's President recently that there is a "distinct possibility" Russia could take military action against Ukraine in February.

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin later said that Russian President Vladimir Putin has the capability to launch a military offensive against Ukraine, as he called on Russia to stand down on Ukraine.

Biden has warned Russian President Vladimir Putin that an attack on Ukraine would be met with severe economic consequences for Moscow.

The US President has said he would consider personally sanctioning Putin if Russia invades Ukraine.