15:51 GMT +330 March 2017
    President Vladimir Putin (File)

    Lavrov Explains What's Behind Putin's Decision on Donbass Residents' Passports

    © Sputnik/ Alexei Druzhinin
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    Russia decided to validate Donbass residents' documents for humanitarian reasons and the presidential decree will remain in force until the Minsk peace deal is implemented, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Saturday.

    MUNICH (Sputnik) — Kremlin’s press office has released a statement saying Putin had signed a decree that validated IDs, birth certificates and vehicle registration plates, among other documents issued by eastern Ukrainian authorities to permanent residents, on Russian territory.

    Lavrov said this issue had not been brought up during foreign ministers’ talks in the so-called Normandy Four format in Munich.

    "The decree stated clearly this was made out of humanitarian concerns…until Minsk agreements have been fulfilled. The presidential decree validated IDs of Donbass residents so that they could enter Russia legally and use Russian rail transport and air carriers," he explained.

    After the eruption of the crisis in Ukraine in 2014, over a million of Donbass residents applied for a refugee status and temporary shelter in Russia. According to Russia's Federal Migration Service, more than 1 million people fled to Russia following the outbreak of the civil war in Ukraine, of whom approximately 600,000 decided to settle there permanently.

    Kiev launched a special military operation in Ukraine’s southeast in April 2014, after local residents refused to recognize the new Ukrainian authorities, which came to power as a result of a coup.


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    • avatar
      Mishka Kyiv
      Good news. More russians going back to russia?
    • Mikhasin reply toMishka Kyiv(Show commentHide comment)
      Mishka Kyiv, Nope it means you Nazi c*ck-s*cking gay retards are F:ed whatever you do.
    • avatar
      The positions are fixed, everything is setup already, no country is going to change its mind, NATO has a plan, ELITE have a plan, RUSSIA and CHINA are not part of the Plan.
      RUSSIA is a strong nation, ELITE want only weak leader to convert them into followers
      Time is passing .. means we have less time to start WORLD WAR 3
    • Capt'nSkippy !!!
      For Trump to make a stupid statement to hand back Crimea does not make to easing tensions with Russia. Obviously Mr Putin and Lavrov have had this worked out a long time ago, no matter which way it goes to a reaction for every action. It has certainly pi$$ed off the the trough hog in Kiev!!!
    • avatar
      I wonder if the cretins in the ukrainian rada will have the combined brainpower to consider where this will lead? (rhetorical question!)
    • v76
      Great comment from the FB comments section...

      ~Al Barek
      "The chessmaster pictured contemplating his next move. Putin must be tired of saying checkmate all the time."

      Gold :)
    • avatar
      A clear shot in the chest for the West.
    • avatar
      Excellent! A leader takes action in a responsible way, gee what a refreshing concept!
    • Matrix 68
      It really is all very simple. The Russians are just biding their time, letting the USA make all the wrong moves. This way they find who their real partners are and get rid of the scum at the same time. Let them spend billions on NOTHING and then let the Ukrainians come begging. As for Europe, well, they'll always have the big bear on their flank... no libingsraum for you Nazi punks!!
    • choticastilein reply tomichael(Show commentHide comment)
      michael, Ha hahaha... Good one!
    • avatar
      michaelin reply tochoticastile(Show commentHide comment)
      choticastile, thanks! :)
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