Putin tensions SOAR as furious U.S. attacks Russian Federation for 'highly PROVOCATIVE' move

Putin tensions SOAR as furious U.S. attacks Russian Federation for 'highly PROVOCATIVE' move

European Commission spokeswoman Maja Kocijancic said Thursday the fact that Putin's move came just days after presidential elections in Ukraine "shows Russia's intention to further destabilize Ukraine and to exacerbate the conflict".

President Petro Poroshenko said that with this decree "Russia is torpedoing the peace process in the Donbas".

Supporters have framed the law as another step to assert Ukraine's independence from Russian Federation, which ruled it for centuries before 1991.

"Russia, through this highly provocative action, is intensifying its assault on Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity".

The decree says its goal is "to protect human and civil rights" and that the move was "based on universal principles and norms of the worldwide law". "We have no desire to create problems for the new Ukrainian leadership, but to tolerate a situation in which people living in the territory of Donetsk and Luhansk republic are generally deprived of any civil rights, this is already crossing the line from the point of view of human rights", he said.

"It's a classic tool aimed at making the reappropriation of occupied territories much harder for Ukraine", he told Euronews.

Five years of war between Ukrainian troops and Russian-backed forces have killed 13,000 people despite a notional ceasefire signed in 2015.

Firstly, Moscow held off from congratulating Mr Zelensky for his landslide win.

Ukrainian envoy Volodymyr Yelchenko repeatedly accused Russia of "occupation" and "creeping annexation" of the two disputed regions, "forcing" people there to get Russian passports, and using the passports decree to make the implementation of the Minsk agreements impossible.

Zelenskiy's powers will include appointing the head of the state security service, the head of the military, the general prosecutor, the central bank governor and the foreign and defense ministers. "Why? So that President Zelenskiy does not even have the opportunity to think about the dissolution of the Verkhovna Rada (parliament)", he said. Putin, however, unlike other world leaders, has not yet congratulated him on his victory, saying that the election results are not yet final.

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