Russian rouble plunges to record low against dollar amid Ukraine tension
Concerns over further sanctions and military intervention in Ukraine sent the Russian currency to a record low against the dollar
The Russian rouble weakened to a new low on Friday as tensions between the Kremlin and the West over Ukraine intensified.
The value of the Russian currency fell sharply in early trading with the rouble briefly hitting a record low of 37 roubles to the dollar. The currency later recovered some ground strengthening to 36.9 roubles to the dollar.
Yesterday, president Barack Obama accused Russia of “repeatedly and deliberately” violating Ukraine's territory and warned the Kremlin it faces "more costs and consequences" for assisting pro-Russian rebels. Meanwhile, Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko accused the Kremlin of carrying out a “de facto” invasion.
Today, NATO followed suit accusing Moscow of a "blatant violation" of Ukraine's sovereignty and released satellite photographs of what it identified as Russian tanks entering Ukraine's territory.
Russia has consistently denied its involvement in eastern Ukraine, despite Western claims that it is assisting and financing the operations of pro-Moscow separatists to destabilise the government in Kiev.
Speaking at a youth forum on Friday, president Vladimir Putin denied Russia is interested in a pursuing a "large-scale conflict". The Russian leader instead blamed the Ukrainian army for acting like "Nazis in the second world war" by targeting civilians and residential areas, prompting militiamen to take action.
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