Russian President Valdimir Putin signed a Presidential decree to recognize two Ukrainian breakaway regions - the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic and the Lugansk People's Republic backed by Russian backed sepratist as an Independent countries .
These two regions situated in Eastern Ukraine are dominated by the Russian speaking population. The regions have been locked in armed conflict with the Ukrainian government army since a Russia backed armed uprising in the region following Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014.
Their independence, proclaimed following referendums, is not recognised by the international community.
In a televised address President Putin said that eastern Ukraine was part of ancient Russian land and demanded that Ukraine drop its long-term goal of joining the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO).
Putin said that Ukraine had no history of Independence and ordered the Russian troops to move into the Eastern Ukrainian territory for a peacekeeping operation . This action of Putin has sparked fear in the Western countries that Russian troops will soon cross into Ukraine, sparking a major war and conflict in the region .
Putin's announcement drew U.S. and European condemnation and vows of new sanctions. American President Joe Biden, who also spoke to French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, signed an executive order to halt all U.S. business activity in the breakaway regions and ban import of all goods from those areas.
The United States says Russia has massed a force numbering 169,000-190,000 troops in the region, including the separatists in the breakaway regions, and has warned of invasion at any moment.
Russia denies any plan to attack its neighbour, but it has threatened unspecified "military-technical" action unless it receives sweeping security guarantees, including a promise that Ukraine will never join NATO.
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It is the second largest country in Europe after Russia (area wise).
As an Independent country it emerged only after the disintegration of the Soviet Union in 1991.
Ukraine had experienced a brief period of independence in 1918–20, but portions of western Ukraine were ruled by Poland, Romania , and Czechoslovakia in the period between the two World Wars.
Capital : The capital is Kyiv (Kiev), located on the Dnieper river in north-central Ukraine.
President : Volodymyr Zelensky
Currency : Hryvnia
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