It is time to act. We must now use the sanctions powers at our disposal

In reaction to Putin recognising Donetsk and Luhansk as independent, Liberal Democrat Foreign Affairs Spokesperson Layla Moran MP said: “Putin has made clear that he has absolutely no regard for international law or the sovereignty of other countries.

Liberal Democrat Leader Ed Davey

“It’s beyond time for us and our allies to make clear that we have no regard for him, or for his associates who have been treating our country as their playground for far too long. This act of recognition is in breach of commitments which Russia has signed up to at the UN, and as such there should be no impunity – sanctions are justified.

“We must stand with the people of Ukraine. The UK must be at the forefront of the international coalition against Putin’s aggression.

The Donetsk and Luhansk regions are located in the east of Ukraine. Russian passports have been given to many in the region since 2014. Russia has backed unrest in the region against the Ukrainian Government; 29 separate ceasefires have been attempted and failed in the region since the conflict started.

“It is time to act. We must now use the sanctions powers at our disposal. The Prime Minister must also immediately announce a special session of Parliament, to accelerate legislation such as the Register of Beneficial Ownership Bill which will root out the dirty money which Putin’s cronies have stashed in this country.”

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