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Nagpur: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday night dialed Russian President Vladimir Putin, appealed for an ‘immediate cessation of violence.’

Modi also appealed to him to return to the path of diplomatic negotiations and dialogue. In the telephonic conversation, Modi stressed about how India’s top-most priority is safe exit and return of its citizens from Ukraine amid the crisis.

As per the Prime Minister’s office, Modi called for concerned efforts from all sides to return the path of diplomatic negotiations. He further said that differences between Russia and NATO can be resolved through honest and sincere dialogue.

Reportedly, Putin gave a brief about the recent developments in Ukraine to Modi. As per various reports, around 16,000 to 18,000 Indian students are still stuck in Ukraine due to the closure of the airspace and came back to New Delhi.

According to the press release by India’s Ministry of External Affairs, the leaders agreed that their officials and diplomatic teams would continue to maintain regular contacts on issues of topical interest.

What’s happening in Russia and Ukraine?

Russia President Vladimir Putin on Thursday announced ‘military operation’ in Ukraine and called on Ukraine to ‘lay down its weapons.’

As per reports, Putin also vows retaliation against those who interfere with Russian Ukraine operation. The Russian forces have claimed that they have destroyed Ukraine’s airbases and also downed fove aircrafts.

Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky said that he initiated a phone call with the president of the Russian Federation and added that the result was ‘silence.’ Zelensky made an emotional appeal to the Russians to reject an attack and said, “Who can stop (the war)? People.

These people are among you, I am sure.”

Amid the crisis in Russia and Ukraine, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan arrived in Moscow to hold talks with the Russian President. Khan in a bizarre statement said, “What a time I have come, so much excitement.”

On the other hand, soon after Putin’s surprise address to the nation, US President Joe Biden took to Twitter and said that the world will hold Russia accountable for death and destruction. “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. The world will hold Russia accountable,” Biden said.

But why exactly has a war-like situation risen in Ukraine and Russia? Here’s the explanation.

Ukraine and Russia- What’s the history?

30 years ago, Ukraine gained independence, after the fall of the Soviet Union. Since then the country has struggled to combat corruption and bridge the internal divisions. Tensions rose between the two nations when Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych rejected an agreement with the European Union back in 2013. The agreement was in favour of closer ties with Moscow. Turning down the agreement saw a large number of protests which led to overthrowing him as the leader in 2014.

Following the crisis in 2014, the Russian troops saw the opportunity and took control of the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine. Three years later, in 2017, the Ukraine and European Union signed an agreement for opening markets for free trade of goods and services as well as visa-free travel for Ukrainians across all EU nations.

What does Russia want from Ukraine?

The power-hungry Russia sees North Atlantic Alliance (NATO’s) support to Ukraine as a threat to itself and that’s the reason why Moscow is against Kyiv joining the NATO. Another demand by Moscow stated to halt any NATO drills near Russia’s border and also wants the international organization to withdraw its forces from the Eastern Europe.

US President Joe Biden had earlier said that if Russia invades Ukraine, there will be severe consequences and will be sending in their troops. Meanwhile, on the other hand, China has extended full support to the Putin-led Russian government.

This invasion is being termed as the beginning of ‘world war 3,’ with several countries choosing their sides.

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