LUGANSK, February 24. /TASS/. The army of the Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR) will not harm civilians in the Kiev-controlled part of Donbass, LPR head Leonid Pasechnik told the Rossiya-24 TV channel.
"I am sure that we have like-minded people on the other side that is currently controlled by the Kiev authorities, who <...> are waiting for us," he said. "They have absolutely nothing to fear, we definitely won’t harm them because they are our own people, we have been fighting for them too for these past eight years," Pasechnik added.
The LPR head emphasized the need to conduct an awareness-raising campaign in the Kiev-controlled areas amid the Ukrainian propaganda. In addition, he noted that once those areas were liberated, work would begin to restore the destroyed infrastructure facilities.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said in a televised address on Thursday morning that in response to a request by the heads of the Donbass republics he had made a decision to carry out a special military operation in order to protect people "who have been suffering from abuse and genocide by the Kiev regime for eight years." The Russian leader stressed that Moscow had no plans to occupy Ukrainian territories.