MOSCOW, February 22. /TASS/. The Minsk agreements are non-existent after the recognition of the Donetsk and Lugansk Peoples Republics (DPR and LPR), Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday.
"In this sense, no, the Minsk agreements are non-existent now. Why should they be implemented if we recognize the independence of these republics?" he told a news conference.
The Russian president recalled that Kiev authorities have publicly said they were not going to implement the Minsk agreements and in those conditions Russia could not tolerate genocide of the Donbass people any longer. That was why Russia had to recognize the Donbass republics.
"They are not going to implement - what else can be said? And the top officials have already said it in public. What is to be expected then? Shall we wait for the continuation of sufferings of these people, this genocide of nearly four million people who are living on these territories? It is simply impossible to look at it. <…> It could not be tolerated any longer," he said.
Russia, in his words, has always been interested in the implementation of the Minsk agreements as they were a result of a compromise. "I would like to stress once again that we have been interested in the implementation of this Package of Measures because it was a result of a compromise," he said, adding that he was among the authors of this document on the part of Russia.
But, since the signing of the Minsk accords, Ukraine has been seeking to reduce all the efforts toward their implementation to zero. "The Minsk agreements were killed long before yesterday’s recognition of the Donbass republics. And not by us, not by these republics, but by Kiev’s current authorities," Putin stressed.
On February 21, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree recognizing the sovereignty of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics (DPR and LPR). Treaties of friendship, cooperation and mutual assistance were signed with their leaders. Putin instructed the foreign ministry to establish diplomatic relations with the Donbass republics and the defense ministry to ensure peace on their territories.