On the February 20, 2019, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko addressed the U.N. General Assembly in New York to make a statement about the occupation of the Donbass region by Russia. He warned there is a buildup of Russian personnel and equipment on its borders, which he believes to be an offensive strike group under direct orders from the Kremlin to prepare for an assault on Ukraine. He suggested to the general assembly that there needs to be a comprehensive real-time monitoring of the condition along the Russian border with Ukraine.

According to news site Ukrinform, Poroshenko said, “Russia has started the war against its neighbor, whom it calls brotherly, and it is showing no intention to stop. Almost daily, we lose our best sons and daughters. This is what my heart bleeds about every given day. This is what I would never be able to accept.”

February 20th marks the fifth anniversary of the launch of foreign military aggression against the country of Ukraine. Five years ago, more than 100 innocent lives—Ukrainians, Belarusians, Armenians, Jews, and many others—were lost in the name of Ukrainian independence, dignity, and freedom. The Maidan Revolution represented a fresh start—a new beginning for the people of Ukraine.

During this violent time Russia annexed Crimea through military force, then began supporting rebel groups in the Donbass region. Russia launched its covert military invasion, a clear violation of the principles of the U.N. charter to which Russia subscribes. In recent times, Russia has seized Crimea, turned Donbass into a battlefield, and has continued its aggression in the Sea of Azov, the Black Sea, and the Kerch Strait.