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Ukrainian soldiers fortify a position with sand bags at a military camp the Ukrainian Army forces have set up close to the Russian border in east Ukraine Thursday. Ukrainian paratroopers with armoured vehicles were digging in on Thursday near the Russian border as the military demonstrated its presence in the east following Kiev's loss of Crimea to Moscow's forces. Reuters

Putin allies hit with sanctions: Moscow continues to boost its military presence in Crimea region

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WASHINGTON/MOSCOW — U.S. President Barack Obama raised the stakes in an East-West confrontation over Crimea on Thursday by targeting some of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s closest long-time political and business allies with personal sanctions.

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