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U.S. Monitoring Putin's Call to Send Military to Ukraine

Heavily-armed soldiers displaying no identifying insignia maintain watch in a street in the city center on March 1, 2014 in Simferopol, Ukraine. Sean Gallup / Getty Images

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A senior White House official said Saturday that the administration is "considering the potential costs" of Russian President Vladimir Putin's announcement that he was seeking to send the military into Ukraine.

"We're monitoring the situation closely, consulting with our partners, and considering the potential costs the President spoke about yesterday," the U.S. official said.

On Friday, President Barack Obama responded to reports of Russian military movements inside of Ukraine by warning, "any violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity would be deeply destabilizing."

Russia's Upper House approved Putin's request within two hours of his statement Saturday.

Earlier Saturday, Ukraine accused Russia of sending 6,000 additional troops into Crimea on Saturday, which U.S. officials said were stationed in a “self-defense posture only.”

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