Ukraine war
Ukraine war iStock

Syria announced on Wednesday that it will recognize two Ukrainian separatist regions and will establish diplomatic relations with both, causing Ukraine to severe ties with the Assad regime.

The Syrian Foreign Ministry announced that it will recognize the “independence and sovereignty” of Luhansk and Donetsk in eastern Ukraine only days after President Bashar Assad, a longtime ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, met with delegations from both regions in Damascus, the Associated Press reported.

“The Syrian Arab Republic has decided to recognize the independence and sovereignty of the Luhansk People’s Republic and the Donetsk People’s Republic,” the ministry said in a statement.

Earlier in the month, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu claimed that Russia had taken control of 97 percent of Luhansk province.

According to Ukrainian officials, Russia also currently occupies around half of Donetsk.