Russia to decide on recognition of LPR, DPR today: Putin
Russian President Vladimir Putin reminds Ukraine that the United States easily withdraws from any agreement it makes, noting that he seeks security, not confrontation.
Russia has done everything in its power to peacefully resolve the conflict in Donbass, Russian President Vladimir Putin said Monday in a meeting of the Russian Security Council. He added the Ukrainian authorities will not implement the Minsk agreements, "And they have declared it repeatedly."
The meeting itself was to make a decision about Donbass; however, President Putin underscored that the calls of the Donetsk and Lugansk People's Republics should be taken into consideration when it comes to deciding the fate of the region.
"Our goal is to listen to our colleagues and determine our next steps in this direction, bearing in mind both the appeals of the leaders of the DNR and LNR to recognize their independence," Putin declared.
Despite saying Kyiv was not fulfilling the Minsk agreement, Putin said he no longer felt that the accords would be able to resolve the Donbass crisis.
"We understand that there are no prospects" for the implementation of the 2015 Minsk peace accords, agreed in the capital of Belarus to curb the Donbass crisis, Putin told the security council.
"Our goal is to listen to our colleagues and determine our next steps in this direction, bearing in mind both the appeals of the leaders of the DPR and LPR to recognize their independence," Putin said.
"The use of Ukraine as an instrument of confrontation with our country poses a serious, very big threat to us," Putin said, noting that his country's priority was "not confrontation, but security."
Though he focused on security, Putin underlined that if Russia were to collide with Ukraine's admission to NATO, the threats against it would increase, but he reminded Kyiv that the US "easily withdraws of any agreement or document it signs."
The Russian leader also underlined that "the use of Ukraine as an instrument of confrontation with our country poses a serious, very big threat to us."
The latest round of tensions over the Donbass region comes as Ukraine launches offensives against the region that the Russian State Duma is considering recognizing.
The head of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, Denis Pushilin, reported on the battle of the Republic's popular forces with Ukrainian troops near the border with Russia.
The chief issued a statement detailing that the Ukrainian armed forces fired more than 1,700 shells at residential areas, bombarding Donetsk with heavy artillery, mortars, grenades, and tanks. "People are dying," noted the statement.
The DPR Ministry of Emergency Situations said Saturday Donetsk had already evacuated 6,600 people, including nearly 2,500 children, over a dramatic escalation of tensions with Ukraine.
On using Ukraine as a tool against Moscow, Putin's words come as the West declines to respond to his country's proposals on security guarantees regarding the non-eastward expansion of NATO.