Donetsk

Is the recognition of LPR and DPR by Russia changing the world order?

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Russian President Vladimir Putin recognized the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) and the Luhansk People’s Republic (LNR) in eastern Ukraine’s Donbass region as independent states and ordered troops into the territories to “keep peace.”

Until now, Russia had refused to recognise the territories.

“I deem it necessary to make a decision that should have been made a long time ago – to immediately recognise the independence and sovereignty of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) and the Luhansk People’s Republic (LNR),” the Russian leader said in a televised speech on Monday (Feb. 21).

The move was condemned by Western countries at a marathon meeting of the United Nations Security Council with Western leaders trying to work out what Putin will do next.

The UN Secretary General’s spokesperson, Stephane Dujarric, said that Antonio Guterres was very concerned about Russia’s decision to recognize the independence of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) and the Luhansk People’s Republic (LNR).

The United States responded by barring citizens from doing business with the two breakaway regions and warned of further sanctions, as did other allies. Germany has taken steps to halt the process of certifying the multi-billion dollar Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline until further notice.

“We must reassess the situation, in particular regarding Nord Stream 2,” German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said at a news conference in Berlin.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov brushed off the threatened response, saying Russia was accustomed to sanctions.

“Our European, American, British colleagues will not stop and will not calm down until they have exhausted all their possibilities for the so-called punishment of Russia,” Russia’s top diplomat also said.

Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said the recognition of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) and the Luhansk People’s Republic (LNR) did not affect Russia’s readiness for talks with Washington, the TASS news agency reported.

The news came after the White House said Sunday (Feb. 20) that US President Joe Biden has accepted “in principle” to meet with Putin in yet another effort to deescalate the Russia-Ukraine situation via diplomacy. White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the summit between the two leaders would occur after a meeting between Secretary of State Antony Blinken and his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov.

Although a law officially recognising the DPR and LNR has yet to pass the Federation Council, Russia’s upper chambers of parliament, the matter could be settled as early as Tuesday (Feb. 22).

Here is a summary of international responses so far:

China

Beijing called for all parties to “avoid any action that may fuel tensions.” “The current situation in Ukraine is a result of many complex factors,” China’s UN ambassador Zhang Jun told the UN security council.

India

“The immediate priority is de-escalation of tensions, taking into account the legitimate security interests of all countries and aimed towards securing long-term peace and stability in the region and beyond,” India’s ambassador to the United Nations T.S. Tirumurti said.

US, France, Germany

French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and US President Joe Biden agreed that “this step will not go unanswered,” the German chancellery said in a statement published following their conversation.

EU

Ursula von der Leyen of the European Commission and President Charles Michel of the European Council condemned Putin’s move as “a blatant violation of international law,” they added: “The EU and its partners will react with unity, firmness and with determination in solidarity with Ukraine.”

Serbia

“Everything we knew yesterday no longer exists today… This is probably the most difficult situation for all our contemporaries, our parents, for us and our children… This de facto and substantially changes the world order” Serbia’s President Aleksandar Vucic stated. “This is the severity of our position: Serbia is on the European path, Serbia has always supported the integrity of Ukraine, and on the third side, there are 85% of citizens who, no matter what happens, no matter how it happens, will be on the side of Russia.”

Is the recognition of LPR and DPR by Russia changing the world order?

UPDATE 23/02/2022

Statements, sanctions and all the latest on Russia-Ukraine crisis

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday (Feb. 23) that his country remains open to diplomacy.

“Our country is always open to a direct and honest dialogue and ready to search for diplomatic solutions to the most complicated issues,” the Russian leader said in a speech marking the Defender of the Fatherland Day, a public holiday in Russia. “But I want to repeat that Russia’s interests and the security of our people are unconditional.”

The comments came after Washington canceled a meeting between Secretary of State Antony Blinken and his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov, claiming Moscow already started its invasion of Ukraine.

Announcing the move, Blinken said he was still committed to diplomacy “if Moscow’s approach changes”. However, the White House insisted a meeting between Putin and US President Joe Biden is still not out of the question.

Earlier today, the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine declared the state of emergency, called for reservists to enlist in the armed forces and voted in favor of civilians carrying firearms.

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky said the Donbass recognition is aggression against Ukraine.

Meanwhile, European Union sanctions against Russia have taken effect, targeting senior government officials, several companies and members of Russia’s State Duma who voted in favour of recognising the independence of LPR and DPL. The move includes a freeze on the assets of those listed and a ban on them traveling in the 27-nation EU.

US President Joe Biden has allowed sanctions against the company that built the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline to move forward.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told the General Assembly the world is “facing a moment of peril” over the Ukraine-Russia crisis.

With reporting by TASS, Reuters, Al Jazeera, Sputnik News