Prime Minister Boris Johnson warned that President Vladimir Putin is set on a "full-scale invasion of Ukraine" and that the UK will punish Russia with a "first barrage" of economic penalties.

Johnson denounced Russia's decision to send soldiers into two Moscow-backed Ukrainian rebel districts as "a renewed invasion" and a "pretext for a full-scale onslaught" in a speech to the UK parliament hours after the order.

Further sanctions were "ready to be imposed," the British leader added if the Kremlin continued to act aggressively in what he feared would be a "protracted crisis."

"The U.K. and our allies will begin to impose the sanctions on Russia that we have already prepared... to sanction Russian individuals and entities of strategic importance to the Kremlin," he told M.P.s (per NDTV).

The latest UK sanctions, according to Johnson, will target those Russian commercial interests that have been backing "Russia's war machine" in eastern Ukraine.

"They will hit Russia very hard and there is a lot more that we are going to do in the event of an invasion," he added per Sky News.

Further actions, according to the PM, might include preventing Russian corporations from raising cash on UK financial markets and taking steps to "unpeel the facade of Russian ownership of enterprises."

He also asked other European economies to "snip the drip feed" of Russia's Nord Stream gas pipelines into their lifeblood.

In response to Putin's activities in Ukraine, Germany declared it had stopped approval of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, which flows beneath the Baltic Sea from Russia to Germany.

After recognizing the rebel-held districts of Donetsk and Luhansk as autonomous, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered troops into them on Monday.

However, according to Downing Street, the deployment of Russian forces in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions equates to a renewed invasion of the country.

The United States and the United Kingdom feel that Russia's invasion of eastern Ukraine is a prelude to a larger invasion.

However, The Guardian said the U.S. has not used the term to characterize the recent troop deployments.

According to the EU's foreign affairs representative, the group does not believe a "full-fledged invasion" has occurred.

Johnson is expected to lay out the new measures in further detail in the House of Commons late Tuesday.

There is more Russian irrational behavior to come, he warned, referring to the "initial volley" of measures.

Johnson warned that Russian attempts to totally invade Ukraine would be "absolutely devastating."

He added that Putin's attempt to conquer another European country would be significant.

However, the Prime Minister expressed hope that a diplomatic solution could still be found.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson
Prime Minister Boris Johnson leaves 10 Downing Street for PMQ's on March 25, 2020 in London, England. British parliament will be suspended tonight due to concerns about the spread of COVID-19. It had previously been scheduled to break for Easter on March 31; it will tentatively sit again on April 21. The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has spread to at least 182 countries, claiming over 18,000 lives and infecting hundreds of thousands more. Peter Summers/Getty Images

© 2024 Latin Times. All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.