Poroshenko imposes martial law in Ukraine

Poroshenko imposes martial law in Ukraine

The Ukrainian armed forces have been put on full combat alert by the decision of the chief of the country’s General Staff, the press service of Ukraine’s Defense Ministry reported.

"In accordance with the National Security and Defense Council’s decision on imposing martial law, the chief of the General Staff and commander-in-chief of Ukraine’s armed forces ordered to put the Ukrainian armed forces’ units on full combat alert," TASS cited the press service as saying.

Due to the situation in the Kerch Strait, National Security and Defense Council Secretary Alexander Turchinov earlier voiced the initiative on imposing martial law in the country for 60 days backed by the Ukrainian president. Now this bill is to be considered by Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada. According to its speaker Andrei Parubiy, its meeting will be convened on Monday at 16:00 local time.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said that the imposition of martial law in the country would not affect the situation in Donbass, and did not mean that Kiev would conduct an offensive military operation.

"The introduction of martial law does not mean in any way that Ukraine will conduct any offensive actions. Ukraine will exclusively conduct actions to defend its territory, protect and ensure security of its citizens. It also does not mean a change of position on the contact line in certain areas of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions and other areas," the Ukrainian president said in a speech broadcast by Ukrainian television channels.

On November 25, the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) border directorate for Crimea reported that three Ukrainian warships had illegally crossed Russia’s state border in the Black Sea and entered Russia’s territorial waters performing dangerous maneuvers. Later on, the FSB said that two more Ukrainian warships had sailed off from Berdyansk to join the three vessels. However, they soon turned back.

All three Ukrainian Navy vessels, which violated the Russian state border, were detained in the Black Sea, with weapons used to force them to stop. Three wounded Ukrainian military servicemen received medical care, the FSB said, adding that there was no threat to their lives. A criminal case has been initiated over violation of Russia’s state border.

The FSB stressed that "before making such dangerous and irresponsible decisions, the Kiev leadership should have thought about possible consequences of its actions.".