MOSCOW (QHA) -

Russian President Vladimir Putin has warned Ukraine is "on the verge of civil war."
 
The Kremlin said Putin made the comment in a telephone call with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on the situation there, RFE/RL reports.
 
Putin spoke hours after Ukrainian armed forces retook control of a small military air base in the east of the country, where pro-Russian separatists have seized control of buildings and other facilities in at least nine cities.
 
Acting President Oleksandr Turchynov said the base in Kramatorsk had been "liberated."
 
Another "anti-terrorist" operation was also reportedly under way in nearby Slovyansk, although few details have emerged there.
 
The White House described Ukraine's response to an "untenable" situation in the east as "measured."

QHA