GUBKIN /Belgorod region/, July 14. /TASS/. The crisis in Ukraine will continue until Ukrainians’ patience runs out, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Friday at a meeting with workers in the Belgorod region, central European Russia.
When asked how long the Ukrainian crisis could go on, Putin said it was a rhetorical question. He noted that both Ukrainians and Russians are noted for their patience. "How long will it go on? I don’t know. It will depend on people who live there [in Ukraine], on how long they are going to tolerate it," Putin said. "I hope very much that it will ultimately come to an end some day, and I hope it will be done without bloodshed, in the course of democratic processes."
In his words, the situation in Ukraine is worsening, with GDP shrunk by a third in the recent year and people’s incomes in Ukraine’s Kharkov being half of what people in Russia’s Belgorod earn.
The Russian president said he hopes economic relations between Moscow and Kiev would finally be resumed. In his words, the severance of ties has hit Ukraine most. "We would like to resume cooperation in general. Not all is lost," he said.
He noted that after Ukraine’s signing an association agreement with the European Union, its trade with both Russia and the European Union has slumped dramatically. "Ukraine now has no effectively operating sectors but foe agriculture," Putin said, adding that this sector is also running the risk of declining after legitimizing genetically modified organisms.
Vladimir Putin said on Friday Russian citizenship granting rules for Ukrainian national will be simplified and they will not be required to have a document of renunciation of Ukrainian citizenship.
"We plan to amend the current laws to rid them [Ukrainian nationals] of the necessity to show documents confirming their renunciation of [Ukrainian] citizenship," he said, adding that under the new rules it would be enough to confirm that an applicant for Russian citizenship has filed a citizenship renunciation request with the Ukrainian authorities.