Russia’s President Vladimir Putin and the speakers of the country’s upper and lower houses of Parliament signed a deal today that formally annexes Ukraine’s Crimea region.
Russia’s upper house of Parliament unanimously approved the ratification of the treaty today, a day after the lower house, the State Duma, overwhelmingly passed it.
Russia’s moves to annex Crimea, following a contested weekend referendum in the Black Sea peninsula, have turned a confrontation with Europe and the United States into the biggest crisis in East-West relations since the Cold War.
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THE DAILY BEAST
Vladimir Putin has agreed to a ceasefire in Ukraine until March 21, leaving the Obama administration with just a few days to prevent an all-out war, report Eli Lake and Josh Rogin. It looks like U.S. sanctions aren’t much of a threat: Russian investment firm Marco Advisory predicts the West will not impose “disruptive” or “catastrophic” sanctions, at least until Russia crosses another line. Obama knows he needs to make a stronger move, he just needs to decide what.