Putin calls up reservists to fight in Ukraine

Russian President Vladimir Putin has resisted ordering the country's people into military service to reinforce his troops in Ukraine. But he has ratcheted up the war effort, announcing plans to call up 300 thousand reservists.

Putin said, "To protect our motherland, its sovereignty, and territorial integrity, to ensure the security of our nation and people in the liberated territories, I consider it necessary to support the Defense Ministry's and General Staff's proposal to hold partial mobilization in Russia."

The president made the announcement in his address to the nation on Wednesday. Putin says his goal of "liberating" the eastern region of Donbas has not changed. And he says he supports referendums that would see that and other areas become part of Russia.

Pro-Russian officials in four regions have announced plans to hold the votes over the next week. Authorities in Crimea did the same thing in 2014 before Russian leaders annexed the peninsula.

Ukraine's presidential adviser responded on social media. Mykhailo Podolyak says Russians who demanded the destruction of Ukraine are now being mobilized. And he asked whether everything was still going according to plan.