Ukraine crisis: fears of wider invasion as Russia recognises expanded borders of Donetsk and Luhansk | World news

Like many of her friends, Tatyana, a barista at the fashionable Moscow coffee-shop chain Skuratov, was glued to the screen of her mobile phone as Vladimir Putin addressed the nation.

“Usually, I don’t watch television, especially when our president speaks. But I felt like I had to tune in this time. I was witnessing history in the making,” she said, smoking an e-cigarette. “But I am not sure yet if history is going in the right direction.”

The day after the Russian leader’s late-night speech, in which he recognised the independence of the self-proclaimed republics in Luhansk and Donetsk, Muscovites were digesting what Putin’s decision could mean for them and their futures.

While he ended his address by “congratulating” fellow Russians on the recognition of the two territories, a celebratory mood was absent in the capital, with many fretting about the political and economic consequences his decision might have.

“If the recognition brings peace to the region, fine, why not do it,” said Andrei, a regional director at a large logistics firm in Moscow. “But it is already costing me money. I have invested a lot of my savings in shares of Russian companies.”






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