Footage obtained tonight by Le Figaro of Russia shows tanks headed in direction of Donetsk Ukraine following Putin’s order to send ‘peacekeeping’ forces.
Russian President Vladimir Putin’s earlier address to the nation – in which he said Moscow would recognise the self-declared Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics in eastern Ukraine as independent states:
- In the lengthy speech, Putin railed against Ukraine, calling it a US colony with a puppet regime
- He said “Ukraine never had a tradition of genuine statehood” and that modern Ukraine had been “created” by Russia
- He attacked the idea of Ukraine joining the Nato defensive alliance, saying it would serve as “a direct threat to the security of Russia”
- Putin also repeated his argument that Nato had ignored Russian security concerns
- He ended the speech by saying Russia would recognise the rebel-held territories, warning that Ukraine must stop firing at rebel positions or face the consequences
During his speech, Putin provided no evidence to back up most of his assertions.
Shortly afterwards, he signed two decrees on recognising the rebel entities. The documents say the Russian armed forces will “perform peacekeeping functions” there.