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02.15.22 Breaking News: Russian Duma Votes to Recognize Donetsk and Luhansk Breakaway Republics

The voting this morning appears to have been completed and based on initial tweets plus a report via Bloomberg News, the Russian Duma has voted to recognize the breakaway Ukrainian Republics of Donetsk and Luhansk.

The Ukrainian Rada (parliament) had prepared a statement for the Rada to vote on before the Duma’s action just one hour ago (via Ukrinrinform):

On February 15, the Verkhovna Rada could adopt a statement as regards the Russian State Duma’s draft resolution on the recognition of the self-proclaimed “DPR/LPR.”

The Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada, Ruslan Stefanchuk, spoke about this at the Right to Power panel show on Sunday, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.

“Stakes are being raised. Committee hearings have already taken place in the Russian Duma. Perhaps this issue will be submitted to the Duma within days. Our answer is simple and has not changed. That’s because these territories are Ukrainian ones. In the Verkhovna Rada, we’re preparing a statement. This statement may even be voted in tomorrow,” Stefanchuk said.

Needless to say, this might kill the peace buzz first initiated by the supposed withdrawal of Russian units in Belarus this morning. As reported on in the monster war drums thread via Kommersant.ru:

Ukraine will regard the recognition of the LPR and the DPR as Russia’s withdrawal from the Minsk agreements

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