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Donetsk Republic deputy PM praises Ukrainian president's special status law

October 17, 2014, 3:28 UTC+3 DONETSK

The self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic intends to “follow its way” despite the law on Donbass’ special status

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DONETSK, October 17. /TASS/. The self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic intends to “follow its way” despite the law on Donbass’ special status, chairman of the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) Supreme Council Boris Litvinov told TASS on Friday.

“The quintessence of this document is that, if I don’t make a mistake, we’re indicated to hold elections to local bodies of power - to rural, settlement, district and town councils on December 7. On the former Donetsk region’s territory the city council has not already fulfilled its functions in April. It did not hear the population’s request to put forth an initiative on Ukraine’s federalisation. Nobody will elect a regional council. Nobody will elect new bodies of power with a special status. We’re following our way,” Litvinov said.

The republic intends to hold elections of its head and the People’s Council on November 2. “We’re following this way. We’re electing our supreme legislative and executive power in the nationwide elections,” he said.

Earlier, the first deputy premier of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) said, Andrei Purgin, said the signing of the law on a special status for Donbass - the Donetsk and Luhansk regions in eastern Ukraine seeking independence from Kiev - was a positive step.

“I believe this is a positive step but it does not influence the political situation. It’s certainly a plus. It means that the party of peace and not the party of war is winning. The law has its pluses and contact points,” Purgin said.

“We positively assess the fact that Ukraine is moving to meet us halfway but it does not change our positions regarding the political aspect,” he said.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed a law on a special status for Donbass on Thursday, October 16.

The document is stipulated by agreements reached in Belarusian capital Minsk in early September. The special status is granted for three years.

In September the Ukrainian parliament passed a law granting a special self-rule status for certain districts in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions. A total of 277 lawmakers in the 450-member parliament voted in favor of the legislation, proposed by President Poroshenko. The required minimum of votes to pass a law in Ukraine is 226.

The special status for Donbass is designed for three years, Poroshenko said.

“During this time we will have an opportunity to turn into reality the issues of deep decentralisation which should be also the issue for amending the Constitution,” he said.

The special status law was stipulated by the Minsk agreements reached in early September in the Belarusian capital on the basis of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s seven-point plan proposed two days before.

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