Russia’s President, on Thursday, February 24, declared war on Ukraine as he announces a military operation in eastern Ukraine’s Donbas region.
In a televised announcement that aired just before 5 a.m. Kyiv time, Putin said that NATO was threatning the existence of Russia and that to protect it, he is sending Russian military into Ukraine.
According to AFP, shortly after the announcement, explosions were heard in Ukraine’s capital, Kyiv, and several other cities.
This comes days after Russia recognized its enclaves in eastern Ukraine’s Luhansk Oblast and Donetsk Oblast as independent states on February 21. Russia has been occupying territories in eastern Ukraine and the peninsula of Crimea since 2014.
Following the “recognition,” the Kremlin-installed leaders of the occupied areas of eastern Ukraine requested that Russia provides military protection from the supposed attack of the Ukrainian army, of which there has been no evidence.
Ukraine’s Foreign Minister, Dmytro Kuleba, who confirmed the attack in a tweet, said that a full-scale invasion was underway.