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Greece to evacuate embassy in Kyiv

Greece on Friday decided to evacuate its embassy in Kyiv, the country’s Foreign Ministry said on Friday.

“Due to the rapid deterioration of the security situation in Kiev, the Ambassador of Greece requested and received approval to leave the city immediately,” said a statement by the ministry.

“The evacuation of the Embassy staff, as well as of Greek citizens who wish to leave, will be made by road,” it added.

The Greek consulates in Mariupol and Odessa will remain operational until further notice, said the statement.

Russia’s military intervention in Ukraine entered its second day on Friday, with the latest reports indicating that Russian troops were heading toward the capital Kyiv from several directions.

Putin had ordered the military intervention on Thursday, just days after recognizing two separatist-held enclaves in eastern Ukraine.

He claimed that Moscow had no plan to occupy the neighboring country, but wanted to “demilitarize” and “denazify” Ukraine.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy accused Russia of trying to install a puppet government and said Ukrainians will defend their country against Russian aggression.

Tensions started escalating late last year when Ukraine, the US and its allies accused Russia of amassing nearly 150,000 troops on the border with Ukraine.

They claimed Russia was preparing to invade its western neighbor, allegations consistently rejected by Moscow.

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