Explained: What Prompted Putin's Invasion Of Ukraine, Russia's Global Defiance
Early Thursday morning, Russia started a military assault against Ukraine that amounted to an invasion, raising worldwide concerns of a huge multi-national armed confrontation. In a televised address, Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia, announced the strike, after his claim that a 2015 ceasefire agreement to end hostilities over the separatist territories of Luhansk and Donetsk is illegal.
Following that, there were claims of bombings and missile attacks in important Ukrainian cities, including the capital Kyiv and rebel-held Luhansk and Donetsk. Russia has stockpiled around 150,000 soldiers and major armed equipment around the border, according to Western intelligence.
So far, Russia claims to have destroyed air defences and airbases, whereas the Ukrainian army claims to have shot down 6 Russian planes in Luhansk.
Russian bombardment has slaughtered at least 8 people and injured nine others, according to Reuters, citing an adviser to Ukraine's Minister of Internal Affairs.
Nearly every major country, such as the United Kingdom, United States, Canada, and the European Union have denounced Russia's conduct. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has asked Putin to call a halt to the conflict for the sake of mankind, warning of dire implications for Ukraine and the rest of the globe.
Why has Russia launched an attack on Ukraine?
Russia considers Ukraine is getting increasingly nearer to the West through NATO and the European Union. Ukraine is not a NATO member, although it has collaborated with the organisation and has indicated its desire to join.
Putin, on the other hand, is well aware that joining NATO will make bringing Luhansk and Donetsk under his authority much more difficult. He has also condemned Ukraine of becoming a puppet in the grips of the West on several occasions.
Viktor Yanukovych, a pro-Russian politician who was thrown out of office by the Ukrainian legislature in February 2014, was the catalyst for Russia's takeover of the militarily important Crimea peninsula 8 yrs ago.
It was a previous Soviet republic that won independence in 1991. Although Russia and Ukraine have significant political, social, cultural, and historical links, ties have been tense since 2014.
Fearing that if Ukraine enters NATO or comes any nearer to the West, it would be encircled by hostile troops, the Kremlin has requested assurances that NATO would not admit it or other ex-Soviet Republic members.
Western nations and NATO have rejected such worries, but Putin has made it obvious that he does not believe them.
In the face of sanctions, Russia's resistance is inspiring.
Sanctions have been imposed on Russia by the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, and other nations, targeting its banks and politicians who backed the use of force.
Putin, on the other hand, appears uninterested.
Sergei Lavrov, the Foreign Minister of Russia dismissed the possibility of sanctions earlier this week, stating that they're accustomed to it. They are well aware that fines will be applied in any situation. With or without justification.
He claims that they have already threatened us with a slew of penalties, including the parent of every sanction, as they call it now.
Putin may also be confident that the United States and other Western countries would think multiple times about sending soldiers into the fight, risking turning it into a possible global battle.
According to two former US military officers mentioned in a Bloomberg piece, Putin may threaten a long-term military campaign practically forever provided he is ready to pay the expense of retaining a significant number of soldiers and weapons in the field.
Putin warned when he started the armed operation that anybody who attempts to intervene with them, and especially those who try to create dangers for Russia, would face repercussions that they have never witnessed before in their past.