A few hours after announcing the independence of the self-proclaimed republics of Donetsk and Luhansk in the Donbas region, President Vladimir Putin has sent “peace troops” to these rebel enclaves.
The Kremlin has recognized Donetsk and Luhansk as “sovereign and independent states”, even though Ukrainian President Volodymir Zelensky has warned that this Russian movement is a violation of territorial integrity.
However, in the streets of these separatist regions the opinion is different. With fireworks, the pro-Russian citizens celebrated the arrival of the tanks sent by Putin.
The President of the United States, Joe Biden, has signed an executive order that includes the prohibition of “new investment” by any American citizen and the veto of “import into the United States, directly or indirectly, of any good, service or technology” from the territories of the Donbas.
The European Union has expressed itself in the same vein. The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, has said that they will react “with unity, firmness and determination in solidarity with Ukraine”.
The UN Security Council has also called an emergency meeting at the request of Ukraine.
“The Allies urge Russia, in the strongest possible terms, to choose the path of diplomacy and to immediately reverse its massive military build-up in and around Ukraine,” said the Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg.
Although it has not yet been specified what kind of measures will be taken against Russia, the West plans to exclude the country from the Swift system, a cooperative group founded in Brussels and which is the basis of the global financial system used by 11,000 banks in 200 countries around the world.