Russia Begins Full-Scale Invasion Into Ukraine, Putin Confirms ‘Military Operation’ Underway
PRIMORYE TERRITORY, RUSSIA - MARCH 21, 2017: A 2S5 Giatsint self-propelled gun fires during tactical exercises held by artillery detachments of the Russian Eastern Military District's 5th Army at the Sergeyevsky training ground. Over 2500 servicemen practice combat skills received in 2017 winter training exercises.
Yuri SmityukTASS via Getty Images

Russia has reportedly launched their full scale invasion into Ukraine during the early morning hours on Thursday, according to a top U.S. Senator.

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), Vice Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, tweeted, “The Russian invasion of Ukraine is now underway.”

“In the hours to come, Russia will conduct strikes on air defense systems, move to cut off Kyiv from eastern Ukraine, [and] move to cut off Ukraine’s military forces on the line of contact in the east to prevent them from falling back to defend Kyiv,” Rubio added.

Russian President Vladimir Putin announced during a speech that was broadcast during the early morning hours on Thursday that a “special military operation” was underway with the goal of demilitarizing the country. Putin told Ukrainian soldiers to lay down their weapons and go home.

He also issued a threat that appeared to be aimed at NATO and the United States, saying, “A couple of words for those who would be tempted to intervene, Russia will respond immediately and you will have consequences that you never have had before in your history.”

Rubio noted that “explosions” were now being heard “in the vicinity of the important trading port of Mariupol.”

ABC News’ Chief Global Affairs Correspondent Martha Raddatz reported that “Russian military leaders have gone to their command center, and cyberattacks are underway.”

U.N. Secretary General António Guterres pleaded with the Russians during an emergency meeting, saying, “President Putin, stop your troops from attacking Ukraine.”

Democrat President Joe Biden responded to Russia launching their full-scale invasion into Ukraine by saying that the world was praying for Ukraine.

“The prayers of the entire world are with the people of Ukraine tonight as they suffer an unprovoked and unjustified attack by Russian military forces,” Biden said. “President Putin has chosen a premeditated war that will bring a catastrophic loss of life and human suffering.”

“Russia alone is responsible for the death and destruction this attack will bring, and the United States and its Allies and partners will respond in a united and decisive way,” Biden claimed without providing any details. “The world will hold Russia accountable.”

“I will be monitoring the situation from the White House this evening and will continue to get regular updates from my national security team,” he added. “Tomorrow, I will meet with my G7 counterparts in the morning and then speak to the American people to announce the further consequences the United States and our Allies and partners will impose on Russia for this needless act of aggression against Ukraine and global peace and security. We will also coordinate with our NATO Allies to ensure a strong, united response that deters any aggression against the Alliance. Tonight, Jill and I are praying for the brave and proud people of Ukraine.”

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