Putin Calls Ongoing Events in Donbass Genocide
14:28 GMT 15.02.2022 (Updated: 15:19 GMT 15.02.2022)
Earlier in the day, the Russian parliament, the State Duma, issued a formal request to the president to recognise the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Lugansk People's Republics located in Ukraine's east.
Russia's President Vladimir Putin has called the events taking place in the Donbass region of Ukraine "genocide",
as he made comments after meeting German Chancellor Olaf Scholz. He added that Kiev systematically violates human rights, including by legalising the discrimination of the Russian-speaking population of Ukraine.
Putin also commented on the Russian State Duma's passing a motion requesting him to recognise the two self-proclaimed people's republics located in Donbass. He expressed the hope that the Minsk accords are still possible and that it is not too late to implement them.
The Russian president went on to criticise Kiev's repeated refusal to implement the Minsk accords
or follow the resolutions reached as part of the Normandy format with Germany and France.
"There has been no progress on such fundamental issues as constitutional reform, amnesty [to all Donbass residents], local elections and legal aspects of the special status of Donbass", Putin said mentioning the key provisions of the 2015 Minsk agreements.
Commenting further on the Duma's request, Putin said that he will act in the interests of resolving the Donbass issues and keep in mind the unrealised potential of the Minsk agreements' implementation.
The Ukrainian government, which came to power as the result of a West-backed coup, has been waging a war against the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Lugansk People's Republics since 2014. The Donbass region rebelled because of fears its Russian-speaking population's right to use whatever language they choose would be infringed by the new nationalist-minded authorities. Their fears proved to be correct several years later.
Despite the truce being negotiated via international mediation back in 2015, little progress has been achieved so far. The authorities of the two republics regularly complain that Kiev has broken the ceasefire
and is trying to resolve the conflict using military means.
Moscow, in turn, repeatedly condemned Kiev's resistance to implementing the Minsk agreements for various reasons. In one of the latest examples, Kiev decided to introduce a bill in parliament that would deny amnesty to those who had fought for the self-proclaimed people’s republics once the conflict is over. The Minsk agreements state clearly that such an amnesty must be provided for all people living in the rebellious areas once peace is achieved.