Moscow has kicked the board. Several days after threatening to sign the status of the “republics” of Donetsk and Luhansk, the two breakaway regions of eastern Ukraine, Vladimir Putin unilaterally and immediately recognized the independence of the two regions on MondayDespite the warnings of the West. Not satisfied with this challenge, The Kremlin has allowed to send troops from the Russian army to these areas In order to “maintain peace,” according to a decree published in the early hours of Tuesday morning.
In a televised act, after his address to the nation in which he sharply criticized Kiev, the Russian President The decree was signed with the leaders of the self-proclaimed separatist republicsJust an hour after he sent a statement to his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, and to German Chancellor Olaf Schulz, expressing his intention to recognize independence. And although the official note stated that the decision would be taken “in the near future”, Putin did not wait any longer to blow up the Minsk peace agreements.
At the Security Council on Monday, Putin advanced that Russia should recognize the independence of these regions, although he specified during the declaration that this recognition would not mean the annexation or formal addition of these regions to its territory. This statement was the conclusion of a televised meeting of his security department, during which several officials addressed the deteriorating situation in Donetsk and Lugansk, after nearly eight years of conflict with Kiev, which killed about 15,000 peopleAccording to Moscow.
But beyond the apparent altruism of the Kremlin, there is also a perfect excuse for sending its military power to the Ukrainian borders, to justify itself with the idea of supporting the independence of pro-Russian regions.
Russia’s decision Thus, he ignored the warnings of some countries such as Germany. On the same Monday, Shultz discouraged Putin from recognizing the self-proclaimed breakaway republics of Donbas, because such a move blatantly contradicts the Minsk agreements to settle the conflict in eastern Ukraine.
The Russian president’s passage comes after Moscow complained about Ukraine’s attempt to enter Russian territory with armed vehicles, after which the Russian army claimed the killing of five Ukrainian soldiers. Kiev dismissed the accusation on Monday, calling it “fake news”, recalling Russia’s “false flag” strategy to justify the invasion of Ukraine.
According to the US government, Russia has amassed a military force of between 169,000 and 190,000 troops in the region, including pro-Russian rebels from eastern Ukraine.
Sanctions on the horizon
In response to the Russian move, US President Joe Biden announced on Monday night that He will “soon” sign an executive order with economic sanctions for The self-proclaimed breakaway republics of Donetsk and Luhansk. According to the White House statement, the executive order will prohibit new investments, trade and other economic transactions by US institutions and citizens in the territories.
On the other hand, the West is preparing to impose sanctions on Moscow. Before Russia revealed its rule, the European Union urged Putin not to recognize the independence of Donetsk and Luhansk in the Donbass region of eastern Ukraine, because otherwise he would respond “unitedly and forcefully.”
As Russia advances, representatives of the 27 countries are expected to meet on Tuesday to determine their response, although European Council President Charles Michel and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen have indicated in a statement that, for the time being, directives will be given. Punishment for “persons relevant to the decision” to recognize independence. Names included in this list They will be prevented from entering the European Union and their assets on community lands will be confiscated.
Recognition of the two breakaway regions in #Ukraine It is a flagrant violation of international law, the territorial integrity of Ukraine and #minsk agreements.
The European Union and its partners will act with unity, firmness and determination in solidarity with Ukraine.
– Ursula von der Leyen (@vonderleyen) February 21 2022
‘We are ready to deal with A united and strong frontYes [Rusia] The High Representative for Foreign Affairs of the European Union, Josep Borrell, decided at a press conference at the end of the meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers of the Community, before the Kremlin’s statement “to do so”. “If there is a confession, I will impose sanctions on the table and the ministers will decide,” Borrell warned.
The decrees of President Putin ordering a so-called peacekeeping mission in the so-called Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics are another outright aggression against Ukraine, a violation of its territorial integrity and sovereignty.
The @a The Security Council must approve as soon as possible
– Josep Borrell Fontelles (@JosepBorrellF) February 21 2022
Borrell said ministers condemned the build-up of Russian forces near Ukraine as “increasing provocations” by Moscow-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine. equally Condemn the mastermind acts and manipulation of information They are “clearly creating a pretext for a military escalation in Ukraine.”
“Consensus in the case of Ukraine is guaranteed“Everyone agrees,” Borrell said, referring to the package of sanctions they have prepared and which member states will adopt in the event of a new Russian aggression against its neighbors.
Dialogue in dynamite
Russia’s decision You blew up the summit with the United States with dynamiteRussian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov announced today, Monday, that he will meet next Thursday with US Secretary of State, Anthony Blinken, to discuss security guarantees required by Russia and escalation over Ukraine.
Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said on Monday that the Russian President’s recognition of the declared republics of Donetsk and Lugansk in Ukraine, shows that A categorical rejection of dialogue. from Russia.
I condemn #Russia Recognition of Donetsk / Luhansk in #Ukraine. He makes efforts to resolve the conflict and violates the Minsk agreements. #Boy Ukraine supports sovereignty and territorial integrity. We urge Moscow to stop fueling conflict and opt for diplomacy. https://t.co/H4yczPG8XM
– Jens Stoltenberg (@jensstoltenberg) February 21 2022
Along the same lines, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg condemned Russia’s decision, accusing Moscow of creating a pretext for a new invasion.
“Moscow continues to fuel the conflict in eastern Ukraine by providing financial and military support to the separatists,” Stoltenberg said. “This undermines the sovereignty and territorial integrity of UkraineIt undermines efforts to resolve the conflict, violates the Minsk agreements, and Russia is a party to them.”