Russian troops attacked On Ukraine: Airports and military headquarters near cities across Ukraine were hit first, including the main Boryspil International Airport in Kiev.
Then tanks and soldiers rolled north-east into Ukraine, near Kharkiv, a city of 1.4 million people. Near Luhansk in the east, Belarus in the north and Crimea in the south. Paratroops seized a major airbase outside Kiev and Russian troops also landed in Ukraine’s major port cities of Odessa and Mariupol.
Moments before the invasion began, President Putin announced on TV that Russia could not “feel safe, developed and exist” because of what he called a constant threat from modern Ukraine.
Many of his arguments were false or irrational. He claimed that his goal was to protect victims of bullying and genocide and was a target of “demilitarization and de-nazification” of Ukraine. There has been no genocide in Ukraine. It is a vibrant democracy headed by a president who is Jewish. “How can I be a Nazi?” Volodymyr Zelensky, who compared the Russian attack to the invasion of Nazi Germany in World War II.
24 FEB: Russia Ukraine conflict Live: Russia destroys Ukraine airbases, air defenses 2022
President Putin has often accused Ukraine of being annexed by extremists. Ever since pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovich was ousted in 2014 after months of protests against his regime. Russia then occupied the southern region of Crimea and started a rebellion in the east. Supported separatists, who have fought Ukrainian forces in a war that has claimed the lives of 14,000 people.
In late 2021 they began deploying large numbers of Russian troops near the borders of Ukraine. Then this week he scrapped a 2015 peace deal for the East and recognized areas controlled by the rebels as independent.
Russia has long opposed Ukraine’s move to the European Union and the West’s defensive military alliance NATO. In declaring Russia’s invasion, he accused NATO of jeopardizing “our historic future as a nation”.