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Stoltenberg, Ukraine leader discuss Donbass, Russian passports for Donbass residents

The NATO chiefl dubbed Russia’s move to give Russian passports to Ukrainian citizens as "the latest example of Russian attempts to destabilize eastern Ukraine," and "a step in the wrong direction"

BRUSSELS, June 4./TASS/. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg and Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky discussed on Tuesday the situation in Donbass, including Russia’s decision to ease Russian citizenship rules for local residents.

At a joint briefing in Brussels, the NATO secretary general dubbed Russia’s move to give Russian passports to Ukrainian citizens as "the latest example of Russian attempts to destabilize eastern Ukraine," and "a step in the wrong direction".

On April 24, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree, which eases Russian citizenship rules for residents of certain regions of southeastern Ukraine. "Individuals permanently residing in certain areas of Ukraine’s Donetsk and Lugansk regions have the right to apply for Russian citizenship under a fast-track procedure," the decree reads. According to the document, the decision was been made "in order to protect human rights and freedoms" based on generally accepted international laws.

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