Putin ratifies treaties with breakaway Ukraine regions
Russian President Vladimir Putin has ratified treaties with the Russian separatist-held Ukrainian regions he officially recognized as independent on Monday, including areas the Ukrainian military has possession over, Reuters reported on Tuesday.
Russia's lower house voted to pass the treaties regarding the so-called Donetsk People's Republic and the Luhansk People's Republic regions in eastern Ukraine on Tuesday.
The treaties would allow Russian troops to enter the Donbas region, build military bases and move forward with economic integration, according to Reuters.
A Kremlin spokesperson said Russia recognized all the territory that the separatists claimed in 2014 after Russia invaded Crimea.
Since 2014, Ukrainian forces have been able to reclaim much of the territory the Russian-backed separatist said they had control over.
Multiple countries, including the U.S., have begun preparing sanctions against Russia for the aggressive moves.
Ukraine's president said Monday the country would not give any territory to Russia even as Moscow's forces prepared to move in.
Countries including Hungary, Poland and Romania are preparing to take thousands of Ukrainian refugees if a war breaks out.