The subject of a possible invasion of Ukraine by Russia has been a constant topic in the news cycle over the past couple of weeks.

This is because tens of thousands of Russian troops have been amassing on Ukraine's borders, which has caused concern.

Western governments have held talks with Russia to try and find a solution to this activity but US President Joe Biden has warned there is a "distinct possibility" that Russia will commit to invading in the next month, as reported by BBC News.

But why did this all start and what is the history behind the current actions Russia are taking?

What is the timeline of events for the Russia-Ukraine crisis?

Russia placing military equipment and troops near the border of Ukraine first occurred during March and April 2021.

Bournemouth Echo: Ukrainian forces have been preparing for a potential Russian invasion (PA)Ukrainian forces have been preparing for a potential Russian invasion (PA)

This was the largest mobilisation of forces since Russia annexed Crimea in 2014.

These troops were removed in June after talks were held with the international community, but were back in place in December.

That month Russia also drafted two treaties that contained requests of what is referred to as "security guarantees" which included a legally binding promise that Ukraine would not join NATO.

Additionally, they wanted a reduction in NATO troops and military hardware stationed in Eastern Europe and threatened an unspecified military response if those demands were not met in full.

These requests were rejected by the United States and other members of NATO, and diplomatic talks since then have not eased the tension.

Russia has been warned by Western governments that it will be hit with heavy economic sanctions should it decide to invade Ukraine.

Bournemouth Echo: Western governments are concerned by Russia's activities (PA)Western governments are concerned by Russia's activities (PA)

Why does Russia potentially want to invade Ukraine?

The Wall Street Journal reasoned that Russian President Vladimir Putin perhaps wants Ukraine as it used to be part of the Soviet Union before it fell in 1991.

As it directly borders Russia to its east, Putin perhaps wants to reclaim some of Russia's glory which was lost when it relinquished much of its territory back in the 1990s.

Putin has previously described Russians and Ukrainians as “one people, a single whole.”