Source: Layla Guest | RT

The decision comes amid fears of a worsening conflict in Ukraine’s war-torn east.’Ukraine does not recognize any other kind of solution in Donbass than the military. In light of this, I see no other way than to recognize the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics. I ask the government to prepare documents of recognition and alliance treaties.’

Russian President Vladimir Putin has announced that Moscow has recognized the two self-declared breakaway Donbass republics in Ukraine’s east as sovereign nations, as a military standoff across the contact line continues to escalate.

Speaking as part of a televised address to the nation on Monday evening, Putin signed the decree, saying that “I deem it necessary to make a decision that should have been made a long time ago to immediately recognize the Donetsk (DPR) and Lugansk (LPR) People’s Republics.” Lawmakers will now be asked to consider statements of friendship and support with the two regions.

The move, he said, was a direct result of the failure of the 2014 Minsk agreements, designed to put an end to the fighting. “They are not interested in peaceful solutions – they want to start Blitzkreig,” he claimed. “Every day they are amassing troops in the Donbass,” Putin went on.

At the same time, he slammed Ukraine for “extreme nationalism,” “Nazism” and “Russophobia,” pointing to the shuttering of Russian-language news outlets and laws he said to discriminate against Russian speakers.

Watch Putin’s full statement below: