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Russian proxy in Ukraine claims occupied territories may be incorporated into new Russian federal district

by Nate Ostiller June 6, 2024 7:46 PM 2 min read
Yevhen Balytskyi, a Russian proxy leader operating in occupied Zaporizhzhia Oblast, in Moscow on Aug. 23, 2023. (Mikhail Klimentyev/Pool/AFP via Getty Images)
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The Russian-occupied territories of Ukraine may soon be formed into a new federal district, the state-run media outlet RIA Novosti reported on June 6, citing Yevhen Balytskyi, a Russian proxy leader operating in occupied Zaporizhzhia Oblast.

Russia illegally annexed Crimea and occupied parts of Ukraine’s Donbas region in 2014. After the start of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in 2022, Moscow seized parts of Ukraine’s Kherson, Donetsk, Luhansk, and Zaporizhzhia oblasts.

The sham referendums Russia organized to implement the annexation of Ukrainian oblasts in 2022 have been widely condemned by the UN, EU, NATO, and 143 countries.

Balytskyi, a Ukrainian from Melitopol who previously served as a member of Ukraine's parliament from 2012 to 2019, claimed that the creation of the new district, consisting of the five oblasts, is being "studied at the federal level."

10 years of war: A timeline of Russia’s decade-long aggression against Ukraine
Almost immediately following the end of the EuroMaidan Revolution in Ukraine in February 2014, Russia swiftly moved to annex and occupy the Crimean Peninsula. Within a couple of months, unrest erupted in eastern Ukraine followed by Russian-backed militias taking over administrative buildings. The…

Balytskyi added that it could be called Novorossiya, referring to an aborted project conceived of by Russian proxies in 2014 to create a so-called independent state consisting of Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts.

Russia currently consists of eight federal districts, with the illegally annexed territories of Ukraine incorporated on paper into Russia's Southern Federal District.

Russia’s sham referendums, mobilization, nuclear threats: What it all means
Humiliated on the battlefield, the Kremlin now wants to quickly annex occupied Ukrainian territories and add them to the Russian Federation. Russian proxies in the occupied parts of Luhansk, Donetsk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia oblasts have announced that between Sept. 23 and 27, they will rush sham “…

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