The latest on Ukraine and Russia tensions

By Adrienne Vogt, Aditi Sangal, Meg Wagner and Melissa Macaya, CNN

Updated 8:11 PM ET, Fri February 11, 2022
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11:21 a.m. ET, February 11, 2022

Japan and South Korea have advised citizens to evacuate Ukraine

From CNN's Junko Ogura and Gawon Bae

Image grab of footage released by the Russian defense ministry on February 11 showed tanks, helicopters, and fighter jets deployed in the drills in an unidentified location in Belarus.
Image grab of footage released by the Russian defense ministry on February 11 showed tanks, helicopters, and fighter jets deployed in the drills in an unidentified location in Belarus. (Russian MoD/EYEPRESS/Reuters)

Both Japan and South Korea told their citizens to evacuate Ukraine immediately amid the Russian buildup of troops on the border.

Japan's Foreign Ministry told residents that "the situation continues to be unpredictable."

"While there have been diplomatic efforts by the countries involved, there is a growing possibility that the situation could deteriorate rapidly. For this reason, the entire country of Ukraine has been raised to Level 4," the ministry said.

"Depending on the future situation, we cannot rule out the possibility that commercial flights will be suspended. Many countries are also advising their citizens to leave Ukraine, and it may become extremely difficult to leave the country in the future due to a rush of reservations for commercial flights and difficulty in securing seats. Therefore, if you are currently in Ukraine, please evacuate the country immediately by the safest means possible, including commercial flights. Please do not travel to Ukraine for any purpose whatsoever," it added.

The South Korean government raised its travel alert level for Ukraine to 4, the highest level, banning travel to Ukraine and ordering its nationals in the country to evacuate, according to a news release from the South Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs Friday.

The ministry said the level 4 alert comes into effect on Saturday 5 p.m. Ukraine time.

The ministry said this is a preventive measure in case the local situation rapidly worsens in Ukraine.

As of Friday, there are a total of 341 South Korean nationals in Ukraine, the release said.

South Korea previously advised its nationals residing in Kyiv and 14 other Ukrainian oblasts to leave amid heightened tensions between Ukraine and Russia on Jan. 25.

10:59 a.m. ET, February 11, 2022

Biden is speaking with NATO and key allies on Ukraine-Russia situation

From CNN's Betsy Klein 

US President Biden is holding a call with other world leaders on the situation in Ukraine this morning, a White House official told CNN.

The leaders of Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Romania, NATO, the European Commission, and the European Council will be on the call, according to the official.

“At 11 AM, President Biden will hold a call with Transatlantic leaders today to discuss our shared concerns about Russia’s continued buildup of military forces around Ukraine and continued coordination on both diplomacy and deterrence. Joining the President on the call will be Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Canada, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, European Council President Charles Michel, President Emmanuel Macron of France, Chancellor Olaf Scholz of Germany, Prime Minister Mario Draghi of Italy, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, President Andrzej Duda of Poland, President Klaus Iohannis of Romania and Prime Minister Boris Johnson of the United Kingdom,” the official said. 
11:06 a.m. ET, February 11, 2022

US continues to see "troubling signs of Russian escalation" at Ukrainian border, secretary of state says

From CNN's Jennifer Hansler and Kylie Atwood

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken speaks at a joint press conference of the Quad Foreign Ministers meeting at the Park Hyatt on February 11 in Melbourne, Australia.
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken speaks at a joint press conference of the Quad Foreign Ministers meeting at the Park Hyatt on February 11 in Melbourne, Australia. (Darrian Traynor/Getty Images)

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Friday that a Russian invasion of Ukraine "could begin at any time," including during the Beijing Winter Olympics, and the United States continues "to see very troubling signs of Russian escalation, including new forces arriving at the Ukrainian border."

The top US diplomat made the comments alongside his counterparts from the Quad — Australia, India and Japan — following a day of meetings in Melbourne and after the State Department and US President Biden warned US citizens to depart Ukraine immediately.

"As we've said before, we're in a window when an invasion could begin at any time — and to be clear that includes during the Olympics," Blinken said.

Prior to the start of the Olympics earlier this month, Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman suggested that the Winter Games, which are hosted by China, could impact Russian President Vladimir Putin's thinking about the timing of a potential invasion. Putin traveled to Beijing for the beginning of the Olympics and met with Chinese President Xi Jinping. The two released a lengthy pact pledging no limits to their cooperation.

Blinken told reporters at the joint news conference Friday that the US was "continuing to draw down our embassy" in the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv and "will continue that process."

"And we've also been very clear that any American citizens who remain in Ukraine should leave now," he added.

In Washington, the White House convened a meeting with several Cabinet members and senior national security officials in the Situation Room on Thursday night to discuss Russia's ongoing military buildup near Ukraine, two officials familiar with the matter told CNN. There have been several Situation Room meetings in recent weeks and months to discuss the brewing crisis, one of the sources said, but the meetings have grown more urgent in recent days as Russia has continued to move forces, weapons and logistical equipment into the area and increased troop readiness.

Read the full story here.