Russian President Vladimir Putin orders deployment of peacekeepers to breakaway regions in eastern Ukraine

Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a ceremony to sign documents, including a decree recognising two Russian-backed breakaway regions in eastern Ukraine as independent entities, with leaders of the self-proclaimed republics Leonid Pasechnik and Denis Pushilin seen in the background, in Moscow, Russia.

Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered his defence ministry to despatch Russian peacekeepers to eastern Ukraine’s two breakaway regions, according to a decree published early on Tuesday after he said Moscow would recognise their independence.

Putin earlier signed decrees to recognise the two breakaway regions — the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic and the Lugansk People’s Republic — as independent statelets defying Western warnings that such a step would be illegal and kill off long-running peace negotiations.

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