Russian President Vladimir Putin Monday signed a decree recognizing the independence of breakaway regions Donetsk and Luhansk. Putin made this announcement during a televised address to Russians on Monday. Earlier in the day, Putin held a phone call with his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron and German chancellor Olaf Scholz and stated that he will be signing a decree recognizing the independence of Donetsk and Luhansk.
According to the statement released by Kremlin, both the Western leaders voiced their dissatisfaction on hearing Putin’s decision. “Russian President Vladimir Putin had phone conversations with French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz. Vladimir Putin briefed them on the results of the extended meeting of the Russian Security Council, which considered the current situation around Donbas in the context of the State Duma’s decision on the recognition of Donetsk and Luhansk people’s republics,” the statement says.
US has imposed sanctions on the two Russia-backed separatist regions in Ukraine. President Joe Biden on Monday (local time) signed an Executive Order that will prohibit all new investment, trade, and financing by U.S. persons to, from, or in the “so-called Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics.” Taking to Twitter, Biden said, “I have signed an Executive Order to deny Russia the chance to profit from its blatant violations of international law. We are continuing to closely consult with Allies and partners, including Ukraine, on the next steps.”
UN chief Antonio Guterres criticised the move by Russia and said that its decision to recognize Donetsk and Luhansk as independent is a violation of the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine and inconsistent with the principles of the Charter of the United Nations. In a statement issued by Spokesperson Stephane Dujarric, the UN chief calls for “the peaceful settlement of the conflict in eastern Ukraine, in accordance with the Minsk Agreements, as endorsed by the Security Council in resolution 2202 (2015).”