UK announces extra military support for Ukraine- follow live

Boris Johnson announces extra military support to Ukraine

Boris Johnson has announced an extra package of military support to Ukraine, including lethal aid, in the face of Russia’s “threatening behaviour”.

The eastern European country has declared a nationwide state of emergency after Russia recognised the independence of two separatist-controlled territories in the east of the country and said it was deploying troops there.

The measure, which does not include the crisis-hit Donetsk and Luhansk regions, would last for 30 days but can be extended.

Australia’s prime minister, Scott Morrison, said a “full-scale invasion” of Ukraine was “likely” to take place within 24 hours. Mr Morrison, who has announced fresh sanctions against the Kremlin, said Russian forces were now at “peak readiness to complete a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, and that is likely to occur within the next 24 hours.”

Earlier, Vladimir Putin claimed Moscow was ready to look for “diplomatic solutions” in the ongoing Ukraine crisis. “Our country is always open for direct and honest dialogue, for the search for diplomatic solutions to the most complex problems. The interests of Russia, the security of our citizens, are non-negotiable for us,” the Russian president said in a video message released on Wednesday.

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