Ukraine and Russia: What you need to know now

Public view of Kyiv after Russian President Vladimir Putin authorizes military action in eastern Ukraine, 24 February 2022. REUTERS / Umit Bektas

February 24, 2022

(Reuters) – Here’s what you need to know about the Ukraine crisis now:


* Russia invaded Ukraine by land, sea and air on Thursday, in one of Europe’s largest attacks against another in World War II.

* Missiles rained down on its cities and residents fled after Russian President Vladimir Putin said he would aim to disarm and “de-enrich” Ukraine.

* Ukraine reports that troops are pouring in from Russia and Belarus and landing on the shores of the Black and Azov Seas.

* NATO put more than 100 fighter jets on standby. It will strengthen troops on its eastern side but has no plans to send anyone to Ukraine, said Jens Stoltenberg, its secretary general.

* Volodymyr Zelenskiy, President of Ukraine, urged citizens willing to defend the country to surrender and promised everyone who wanted weapons.

The Kremlin said the length of the military operation would depend on its success.

* The European Union will freeze Russian assets, suspend its banks’ access to European financial markets and target the “interests of the Kremlin” for a “savage attack,” senior officials said.

* US President Joe Biden has called the G7 “serious” sanctions for what he called “Putin’s planned war”.

* Central European countries have begun preparations to receive people fleeing Ukraine.

* China refused to call Russia’s actions an “invasion” and urged all parties to exercise restraint.

* Shares in Europe fell by almost 3% as investors turned to riskier assets. The Russian ruble reached an all-time low.


“I have decided to carry out a special military operation … to protect people who have been subjected to harassment and genocide,” Putin said. “… We will seek to disarm and abolish Ukraine.

“Russia has entered the path of evil, but Ukraine is defending itself and will not give up its freedom,” Zelenskiy said.

“Russia is using force to try to rewrite history … We have no plans to send NATO troops to Ukraine. What we do is a defensive game, “said Stoltenberg.

“The United States and our allies and partners will impose severe sanctions,” Biden said in a statement.


* Biden will meet with his G7 counterparts on Thursday to map out tougher action against Russia.

* EU leaders will discuss further sanctions on Thursday.

* NATO will hold an emergency conference on Friday.

* The UN Security Council will discuss a resolution condemning the invasion.

* European Central Bank policy makers hold what could have been a crisis meeting.

(Editing by Jon Boyle and John Stonestreet)

Ukraine and Russia: What you need to know now

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