March 2 - Ukraine's army is put on full combat alert, while the United States calls for the immediate deployment of international monitors to the former Soviet republic. Sarah Toms reports.
Interim Ukrainian President Oleksander Turchinov puts the army on full combat alert after Russia approved sending troops into his country. .(SOUNDBITE) (Ukrainian) ACTING PRESIDENT OLEKSANDER TURCHINOV SAYING: "There are no grounds for this act of aggression." The announcement has spurred diplomatic efforts to resolve Ukraine's crisis. The UN Security Council held an emergency session on Saturday. . (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. AMBASSADOR TO THE UNITED NATIONS, SAMANTHA POWER, SAYING: "There is a clear way forward that would preserve Ukraine's sovereignty, territorial integrity and address Russia's concerns. First, Russia should directly engage the government of Ukraine. Second, international monitors and observers including from the U.N. and OSCE should be sent to Ukraine. That is the best way to get the facts, monitor conduct and to prevent any abuses. Russia is a leading member of both institutions and can participate actively to ensure that its interests are upheld." Nato and EU officials are due to hold talks in the coming days. As the talking continued, protesters gathered outside the US embassy in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev. They wield placards asking for help or to be saved from Russia. Tensions are high, but it is not only in Ukraine. Here in the US, outside the White House in Washington DC around 100 protesters rallied against Russian military intervention in Ukraine's region of Crimea. Many of these protesters have family who left Ukraine during World War II to escape the Russians. For them, history is repeating itself....and they say that Russian President Vladimir Putin must be stopped at whatever cost.