Russian President Vladimir Putin stressed in his speech on Monday (Feb. 21), when he recognized the independence of Donbass, that Ukraine is an invention of Bolshevik communism, questioning its sovereignty.
By signing a decree, Putin established on Monday a formal recognition of the sovereignty of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) and the Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR) located in the Donbass region of eastern Ukraine.
The Russian leader said that such action was a “long-overdue decision” and called on the parliament to support it and to validate the friendship and mutual assistance agreements with both republics.
However he warned Ukraine to stop aggression in Donbass or it will be responsible for the consequences of the continuation of the conflict that has brought bloodshed.
“We demand that those who have seized and are retaining power in Kiev immediately halt all hostilities. Otherwise, the Ukrainian ruling regime will be wholly and entirely responsible for the possible continuation of the bloodshed,” the Russian president warned, Tass agency reported.
Meanwhile Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov indicated on Tuesday that the recognition of the two separatist regions in eastern Ukraine is expected to help restore calm in the region, Reuters reported.
In his speech the Russian president delegitimized Ukraine’s sovereignty emphasizing that it is an invention of communism, created in the Bolshevik communist revolution.
“Let’s start with the fact that modern Ukraine was created entirely by Russia, more precisely, by Bolshevik and communist Russia. This process began almost immediately after the 1917 revolution,” Putin said.
He further noted that after the fall of the Soviet Union, Russia always cooperated with Ukraine, respecting its interests, but in Kiev “parasitism began to prevail over partnership” and according to him, corruption “literally permeated and eroded Ukrainian statehood, the entire system and all the branches of power.”
According to Putin, if Ukraine joins the alliance, NATO will use it to attack Russia.
“NATO documents officially, straightforwardly declare Russia as the main threat for Euro-Atlantic security. And Ukraine will serve as a foothold for such a strike,” Putin asserted, according to Tass.
“I would like people both in Russia and Ukraine to understand this,” he noted.
Putin views with concern how Ukraine is being militarily reinforced by the West. “Military contingents of NATO countries have been constantly present on the territory of Ukraine under various pretexts in recent years,” he said, asserting that “regular joint drills [by Ukraine and NATO] have a clear anti-Russian bias.”
NATO does not care about Russia’s security concerns and will continue to implement its plan, the Russian leader said.
Earlier, Putin, accused NATO of having deceived Russia with the promise that it would not expand into the space left after the collapse of the Soviet Union. “Not an inch to the East they told us in the 1990s, and look what happened – they cheated us, vehemently and blatantly.”
Tensions have been escalating since the U.S. accuses Russia of deploying up to 150,000 troops near Ukraine’s borders for an invasion.
The Kremlin, meanwhile, has denied wanting to invade Ukraine and accuses the West of fomenting the conflict. It also assured that it is willing to continue the dialogue, and its actions will depend on how events unfold.
Meanwhile the White House confirmed that Joe Biden will sanction the two eastern Ukrainian areas from any U.S. investment, trade and financial activity.
“President Biden will soon issue an Executive Order that will prohibit new investment, trade, and financing by U.S. persons to, from, or in the so-called DNR and LNR regions of Ukraine,” press secretary Jen Psaki said in a statement.