Despite warnings from the West, Russian President Vladimir Putin recognised the independence of two separatist regions in eastern Ukraine in an emotional address on a state-run television channel on Monday.
The news: Putin in a recently televised meeting said, “I believe it is time to make a long-overdue decision, to recognize the independence and sovereignty of the Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics.”
- He was even seen signing mutual aid treaties with rebel leaders in the Kremlin.
- Putin has even asked Russia’s upper house of parliament, the Federation Council to “support this decision”.
- The Russian leader also demanded that Ukraine end military operations against pro-Moscow rebels in the country’s east or face more bloodshed.
What are they saying: Putin declared, “We demand an immediate cessation of military operations. Otherwise, the regime in power in Ukraine will bear full responsibility for the potential continuation of bloodshed.”
- The West had repeatedly warned Putin not to recognise Ukraine’s insurgents, which would effectively kill a fragile peace agreement governing the conflict.
- However, the Russian leader ignored these requests. He told French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz that he would recognise them shortly before his speech was broadcast.