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VORONEZH, April 22. /TASS/. Freedom and democracy in Ukraine cannot be imposed by artillery shellings and ethnic cleansing, Russian Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev told reporters on Wednesday.
Patrushev commented on a statement by President Petro Poroshenko that "the war in Donbas is not only a war for Ukraine’s independence but a struggle for freedom and democracy in Europe and the whole world."
"Freedom and democracy are not ensured by shootings against peaceful citizens of Ukraine’s south-east who want to speak the Russian language," Patrushev stressed. "One cannot impose democracy by artillery shells, ethnic cleansing and with the help of foreign military instructors," he added.
Kiev should first stop the war and violence committed by nationalist armed gangs, carry out a constitutional reform and then ensure freedom and democracy, he said.
"Now the Ukrainian leadership, which is under the control from abroad, is not dealing with this and is only escalating the situation by its actions," the security official added.
According to the United Nations, a total of 6,116 people have been killed and almost 15,500 have been wounded since mid-April 2014 when the military conflict started in eastern Ukraine.