Up to 40,000 Russian troops amassed near Ukraine border

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Security Council Chamber

Up to 40,000 Russian troops are amassed on the border of Ukraine according to the British Ambassador to the United Nations.

The accusation follows the storming of Ukrainian government buildings in the east of the country by pro-Russian militants.

Last month the Ukrainian region of Crimea voted in a referendum to join the Russian Federation, a move which was branded illegal by much of the international community.

The situation in the region has remained tense ever since

Speaking at an emergency session of the Security Council on Sunday evening, Mark Lyall Grant said the crisis in Ukraine was facing a dangerous escalation.

"Satellite images show that there are between 35,000 and 40,000 Russian troops in the vicinity of the border with Ukraine, equipped with combat aircraft and tanks, artillery and logistical support units. Just as six weeks ago, Russia denied deploying its troops to Crimea, it also now denies that it has amassed troops on Crimea eastern border."

Meanwhile the Russian Ambassador to the UN, Vitaly Churkin accused Ukraine of "grotesque Russophobia".

Russia had earlier warned that Ukraine’s planned operation against militants was criminal.

Daniel Dickinson, United Nations.

Duration:1’19″

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