MOSCOW, May 25. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a decree relaxing rules for granting Russian citizenship to residents of Ukraine’s Zaporozhye and Kherson Region, according to the document published on the official portal of legal information on Wednesday.
The amendments are added to the decree that previously introduced a similar procedure for residents of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics (DPR and LPR). Henceforth, the document reads as follows, "citizens of Ukraine, the Donetsk People’s Republic and the Lugansk People’s Republic who permanently reside in the DPR, the LPR, the Zaporozhye Region of Ukraine or the Kherson Region of Ukraine <…> enjoy the right to apply for citizenship of the Russian Federation under a simplified procedure in conformity with Part 8 of Article 14 of Federal Law № 62-FZ ‘On Citizenship of the Russian Federation’ of May 31, 2002."
The article in the federal law cited in the decree says that foreigners can apply for citizenship in a simplified procedure, so they will be exempt from the requirements to live in Russia for five years, have a source of income and pass an exam in the Russian language.
Those applying for citizenship should be considered and either approved or refused within three months since the application is submitted and the required papers are presented.
More relaxed requirements for Russian citizenship were introduced by Putin’s decree in 2019 for residents of the DPR and LPR (when they were separate areas of Ukraine’s Donetsk and Lugansk regions, and after the republics’ independence was recognized by Russia, the decree was updated). The document stipulates that it was signed "to protect the rights and freedoms of each individual and citizen, proceeding from the generally recognized principles and norms of international law" and in accordance with the Law ‘On Citizenship of the Russian Federation.’
The new decree on residents of the Zaporozhye and Kherson regions of Ukraine was signed on May 25 and took effect on the same day.