UKRAINE’S President has called up the reserve troops after Vladimir Putin sent his troops into rebel-held territory.
Volodymyr Zelenskyy said he was calling for reserves for a ‘special period’ after Russia warned it would not stop invading the breakaway regions.
Ukraine has a strong reserve force of 900,000 people with a combined force of 209,000 soldiers, sailors and air force.
But Mr Zelenskyy tonight ruled out a general mobilization – despite Russia raising fears of total war by denying its neighbours’ right to exist.
The Ukrainian president, whose reserves are understood to be mainly drawn from those who have served for five years, said he still pursued diplomatic ways to get out of the crisis.
And he insisted his country would not cede any territory to Russia.
Addressing the nation after a partisan meeting in parliament, the president announced a program of ‘economic patriotism’ that included encouraging local production and cutting value-added tax on gasoline oil.
The move comes after 10,000 troops entered pro-Russian separatist regions, with the Kremlin saying other territory held by Ukrainian forces should belong to the two self-proclaimed republics.
In an even more encouraging development today, Russia’s parliament voted to authorize Vladimir Putin to use the armed forces abroad.
And Vladimir Putin has said he supports the “demilitarization” of Ukraine.
Russia’s terrifying advance began in the early hours, shortly after Putin announced he recognized Luhansk and Donetsk as independent states in a bombastic television address.
Joe Biden and Boris Johnson condemned the move as an “invasion” and dealt a blow to Russian banks and billionaire Putin’s associates.
In a statement from the White House this evening, President Biden said the measures were only a “first wave” and that he would “escalate sanctions if Russia escalates”.
Meanwhile, Russia announced it would withdraw its diplomats from Ukraine, claiming the staff had “received threats”.
The move comes as European Union countries agree on a package of sanctions against the country, with the EU’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell warning of a “particularly perilous moment” danger to Europe”.
With 200,000 massive forces besieging Ukraine, the world is standing on the edge of a knife waiting for Putin’s next move, which could see Europe’s bloodiest conflict since World War 2. .
Russia said it was assisting with “peacekeeping” in rebel-held areas following a disputed statement over shelling by Ukrainian forces.
And concerns about the tank movement being just the beginning of a broader Russian offensive were soon prompted by announcements from Moscow.
Denying Putin’s peacekeeping claims tonight, Joe Biden said “none of us should be fooled” – adding that he expected the Kremlin to start a war.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Russia recognized rebel areas on the border that existed when it declared independence in 2014.
This includes areas in eastern Ukraine currently held by Ukrainian forces on the other side of a 250-mile entrenched “line of communication”.
Putin himself later said Russia recognized Donetsk and Luhansk “within the borders stated in their constitution”.
And in a blatant threat to Ukraine’s existence, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Russia does not recognize the sovereign rights of its democratic neighbours.
Putin loyalists say sovereignty is only for states that represent all of their people – and he echoed Russia’s claim that Kyiv did not represent his ethnic Russian people.
“No one can claim that the Ukrainian regime, which began with the 2014 state coup, represents all people living on the territory of the Ukrainian state,” he said.
The word “coup” is a reference to the overthrow of pro-Kremlin Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych, who resigned after protests exactly eight years ago to date.
Putin himself later raised tensions when he asked the Russian parliament for permission to use the country’s troops abroad.
Meanwhile, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has secretly discussed fleeing the capital Kyiv, CNN reported.
What we know so far
- President Vladimir Putin launches an effective invasion of eastern Ukraine
- He ordered tanks to cross the border into the newly recognized Donetsk and Luhansk regions
- He claims his tank is performing a “peacekeeping function”
- But the actions that could spark the bloodiest conflict since World War 2
Putin ordered troops to enter rebel areas under the guise of “peacekeepers” – a claim that was quickly dismissed as “nonsense” by the United States.
“We anticipated a move like this from Russia and are ready to respond immediately,” White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said.
The situation is being compared to the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, when the US and Russia fell into a 13-day stalemate that brought the world to the brink of nuclear war.
Health Secretary Sajid Javid was asked by the BBC if the situations were comparable, and replied: “I agree with that analysis. I think the situation is as serious.”
General Sir Richard Sherriff, former top NATO commander, said: “This is the most dangerous time in Europe perhaps at least since 1962 and the Cuban missile crisis.”
“Putin’s invasion of a sovereign state could turn into a catastrophic war on a scale not seen in Europe since 1945,” he added.
The UK’s ambassador to the UN Dame Barbara Woodward said Russia had “brought us to the brink”, warning that its actions “will have far-reaching and serious consequences”.
She said that an invasion would unleash “forces of war, death and destruction” on the Ukrainian people.
And Lord West, the former chief of the Royal Navy, warned that one wrong move in the Russia-Ukraine crisis could spark a nuclear war.
There is growing concern that Moscow is now poised to get out of rebel control to plunder more territory from Ukraine.
Russian MP Leonid Kalashnikov, a Putin loyalist, said his country would recognize the entire Donetsk and Luhansk regions – rather than just the areas currently controlled by the rebels.
The country’s deputy foreign minister, Andrey Rudenko, said it has the right to set up military bases in the two regions, as the Kremlin tightens its restraint on them.
The US ambassador to the UN, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, told Mr. Putin: “He calls them peacekeepers. This is nonsense. We know what kind of person they really are.”
“President Biden will soon issue an executive order banning new investment, commerce, and financing by Americans to, from, or within the so-called DNR and LNR regions of Ukraine.”
Amid rising tensions, Ukraine said two of its soldiers were killed and 12 others wounded in intense rebel shelling overnight.
Boris Johnson chaired an emergency Cobra meeting this morning.
TANKS ON THE MOVE
The first signs of Russian forces moving the camera were in Terminator-style Russian Forces footage shot in Makiivka, in the so-called Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) and Luhansk People’s Republic. neighborhood (LPR).
Their arrival was greeted with celebratory fireworks and a wave of Russian flags.
The rest of Ukraine is now preparing for a major attack from the north, south and east “anytime” after Putin declared the besieged nation “part of Russia.”
Today, it was reported that Moscow is urgently looking for doctors to work in makeshift hospitals in Rostov, close to the republics.
One doctor said: “Today we were asked to work at a makeshift hospital in Rostov.
“This is how they say: ‘The pay will be high, your patients will be wounded soldiers’.”
Another paramedic said there was an urgent plea for doctors and nurses “with experience working in conflict zones”.
“We demand that those who have occupied and are holding power in Kyiv immediately stop all hostile acts,” Putin said in a rambling televised address on Monday.
“Otherwise, the Ukrainian ruling regime will be held fully and completely responsible for the possibility of further bloodshed.”
An eyewitness spotted huge columns of troops moving through Donetsk in the direction of Yasinuvata even before he finished his scathing and aggressive statement.
Yasinuvata is just nine miles from the 250-mile World War I-style “line of communication” that has separated Ukrainian and pro-Russian separatists for the past eight years.
The president signed the order before parliament, making Russia the first country in the world to recognize the two small states created when he staged a land grab in 2014.
The last paragraph of his order to parliament said he was ordering the Russian armed forces to “provide peacekeeping operations on the territory of Donetsk and the Luhansk People’s Republic”.
In an even more alarming development, the Russian Parliament is also said to be approving a plan to build military bases in Donetsk and Luhansk self-proclaimed – and stay for ten years.
The US ordered embassy staff to leave Ukraine immediately following the revelations.
The US has warned Russia to create a “kill list” that includes both homosexuals and ethnic Ukrainians should it infiltrate.
But Ukrainian citizens say they will take up arms and “fight to the death” to defend their country.
Meanwhile, there are conspiracies about how a pro-Putin supranational politician on December 27 predicted the timing of the military move into Ukraine – close to now.
His words show a clear plan by the Russian authorities that has been in the works since the end of last year.
Russian MP Vladimir Zhirinovsky was precise almost to the hour in his speech to parliament almost two months ago.
The Liberal Democratic Party leader told MPs: “You’ll feel it at 4 a.m. on February 22.”
Putin’s Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin also admitted that he had been working for “months” to assess how to prevent the economic damage from Western sanctions from recognizing the two regions of Ukraine.
“We have been preparing for months for a potential response to the recognition of the LNR and DPR,” he told a meeting of the national security council.
Putin himself could be quarantined on the effect of sanctions after amassing a huge personal fortune and 1.4 tons of gold bars.
https://www.the-sun.com/news/4749038/ukraine-calls-reservists-putin-sends-troops/ Ukraine’s president summons reservists after Putin sends his troops into rebel-held territory