Russia’s house of Parliament has voted to approve sending Russian military forces into Ukraine, following tensions in the country’s Crimea region.
The vote followed a request from President Vladimir Putin for approval to send troops into Crimea to normalize the political situation there.
Putin cited the “extraordinary situation in Ukraine” in making his request, adding that the lives of Russian citizens and military personnel based in the southern Crimea region had been threatened.
Ukraine’s new government condemned the move.
“We perceive Russia’s actions as direct aggression towards the sovereignty of Ukraine,” said acting President Oleksandr Turchynov on the Twitter account of his Fatherland party.