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Putin orders troops to separatist regions of Ukraine, Kremlin attacked at U.N. meeting

Russian President Vladimir Putin criticized the West and referred to Ukraine as “a colony” in a televised address on Feb. 21. (Video: The Washington Post)

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed decrees ordering military forces into two separatist regions of Ukraine for “peacekeeping” purposes as Moscow recognized the breakaway regions’ independence Monday.

Putin signed a decree recognizing the areas — a move that Russia could use to justify an attack in those locations — and an agreement of cooperation with the heads of the self-declared Donetsk People’s Republic and the Luhansk People’s Republic. The separatists do not control the entirety of their regions, and it was not clear Monday evening whether a military incursion could occur.

The Kremlin’s move was widely condemned at a late-night emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council. President Biden issued an executive order prohibiting U.S. investment and trade in the breakaway regions.

Here’s what to know

  • The United States has warned the United Nations that it has credible information showing that Moscow is compiling lists of Ukrainians “to be killed or sent to camps following a military occupation,” according to a letter obtained by The Washington Post.
  • Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is expected to be in Paris on Friday to discuss the Ukrainian developments with European officials, according to French Foreign Affairs Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian.
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Here's what to know:

The United States has warned the United Nations that it has credible information showing that Moscow is compiling lists of Ukrainians “to be killed or sent to camps following a military occupation,” according to a letter obtained by The Washington Post.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is expected to be in Paris on Friday to discuss the Ukrainian developments with European officials, according to French Foreign Affairs Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian.

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War in Ukraine: What you need to know

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