Ukraine To Declare State Of Emergency, Urges Citizens To Leave Russia

Ukraine To Declare State Of Emergency, Urges Citizens To Leave Russia

Ukraine announced Wednesday it will impose a nationwide state of emergency and urged its citizens to leave Russia, while Russian President Vladimir Putin said he was ready for “diplomatic solutions” to the ongoing crisis, moves that come a day after Russia was hit with a flurry of sanctions by the U.S. and its allies for sending troops to two breakaway enclaves in eastern Ukraine.

Ukraine’s national security chief Oleksiy Danilov said the emergency will be imposed on all of Ukraine’s territory, apart from the rebel controlled Donetsk and Luhansk regions which have been under the order since 2014.

The state of emergency will remain in place for at least 30 days, but may be extended by another 30 days if need arises.

The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry issued an advisory noting that the “intensification” of Russia’s aggression
against Ukraine may cause disruptions to its consular services provided in Russia. In a televised address on Defender of the Fatherland Day, a public holiday in Russia, Putin said that Moscow was “always open” for “direct and honest dialogue” to tackle complex issues.

The Russian president, however, insisted that Russia’s interests and security remained a non-negotiable
issue and it will continue to develop advanced weapons systems and upgrade its military forces. In a statement that is likely to anger the West, Putin also hailed the professionalism and battle-readiness of the Russian military which has been deployed in large numbers close to Ukraine’s borders.

The Ukrainian military on Wednesday began conscripting reservists aged between 18 and 60, Reuters reported. The drafted reservists will be required to serve for a maximum period of one year. A day earlier, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy issued an order introducing conscription of reservists but stopped short of general mobilization of troops as Russian troops began to move into rebel- controlled eastern Ukraine.

On Monday, Putin officially recognized two pro-Russia separatist enclaves Donetsk and Luhansk in eastern Ukraine and ordered Russian troops into the region. In an hour-long televised speech, Putin demanded that the Ukrainian government should “immediately cease” military action in the rebel regions. The Russian leader added that any “possible continuation of the bloodbath” will rest solely on Kyiv. Putin also questioned Ukraine’s right to exist as an independent state, claiming that it “never had a tradition of genuine statehood” and was created by Russia. Putin’s actions triggered a barrage of economic sanctions against Russia from the United States, United Kingdom, European Union, Japan and several other nations.

Additionally, Germany announced that it was suspending the approval of Nord Stream 2 the crucial $11 billion undersea natural gas pipeline connecting Russia to Germany. Russia’s actions also came under intense criticism at an emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council on
Monday evening.

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