Following a week where Russia resumed its military buildup along its border with Ukraine, on Saturday Russian President Valdimir Putin ordered Russian forces nearby to be on “full combat alert.” According to the Telegraph, “the move will be seen as another show of force as tensions between Moscow and Kiev continue to mount.”
The combat alert, which Russia’s defense minister says will last until next week weekend, will include 65,000 troops engaging in military drills, “including several thousand troops of an airborne division which will be moved from a city [124 miles] east of Moscow where they are stationed to the Ural mountains,” the Associated Press reports.
The move to heightened readiness of Russia’s military comes a day after Ukraine ordered a cease-fire after weeks of fighting with pro-Russia rebels. “Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko ordered his forces to cease fire Friday and halt military operations for a week, the first step in a peace plan he hopes will end the fighting that has killed hundreds,” according to the AP. “The Kremlin dismissed the plan, saying it sounded like an ultimatum and lacked any firm offer to open talks with insurgents.”