Washington: US President Joe Biden on Thursday started a virtual meeting with leaders of G7 countries to discuss their joint response to Russia's 'unprovoked and unjustified' attack on Ukraine, the White House said.
In a televised address on Thursday, Russian President Vladimir Putin said his move to launch a military operation in Ukraine came in response to threats emanating from the neighbouring country.
He also warned other countries that if they attempted to interfere with the Russian military operation they would see "consequences they have never seen".
The G7 Leaders' meeting started. President Biden and leaders are discussing their joint response to President Putin's unprovoked and unjustified attack on Ukraine, a White House official said.
The G7 is an informal grouping of seven of the world's advanced economies: Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States and the European Union.
Earlier on Thursday, President Biden convened a meeting of the National Security Council in the Situation Room to discuss the latest developments in Ukraine, according to another White House official.
President Putin announced in a televised address on Thursday morning that in response to a request by the head of the Donbas republic, he had made a decision to carry out a special military operation in order to protect people who have been suffering from abuse and genocide by the Kyiv regime for eight years. Putin has said that Moscow had no plans of occupying Ukrainian territories.
Russia's Defence Ministry reported that Russian troops were destroying Ukrainian military infrastructure using precision weapons. The US has already announced a series of sanctions on Russia to prevent it from accessing Western financial markets.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Thursday vowed to hobble the Russian economy with sanctions for what he termed as President Putin's hideous and barbaric venture of invading Ukraine