According to Putin, Russia does not plan to occupy Ukrainian territory. However, they want to demilitarize and “denazify” Ukraine. Russia will not allow nuclear weapons to appear in Ukraine, Putin said. With his order for a deployment in the breakaway regions of Luhansk and Donetsk, Putin corresponded to a written request from the heads of the so-called people’s republics for assistance against the Ukrainian “aggression”, reported the Interfax agency, citing Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov.
The Kremlin chief is now invading Ukraine for the second time since 2014. Fox News, meanwhile, reported explosions in Kiev and gunshots near the Ukrainian capital’s airport. Explosions can also be heard in the port city of Mariupol.
Key Ukrainian government websites were down shortly before the invasion began. Cyber attacks had previously hailed. The main websites of the Ukrainian government were down early Thursday (local time), including the websites of all ministries.
A separate and potentially more serious hack found hours earlier a tool used to erase data on hundreds of computers in Ukraine, cybersecurity researchers reported, raising fears a destructive cyberattack was developing amid Russia’s military escalation.
Several civilian planes have previously been diverted away from Kiev. Before Russia launched its invasion, Ukrainian airspace was almost completely empty and completely closed to civil aviation.
In the hours before, footage showed tanks and soldiers moving towards the Ukrainian border.