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Zelensky signs decree that rejects independence of Crimea, new Russian regions

Following a coup in Ukraine in February 2014, the governments of Crimea and Sevastopol held a referendum to join Russia

KIEV, October 4. /TASS/. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has signed a decree that rejects Russia’s recognition of independence declared by Crimea, the Donetsk and Lugansk people’s republics and the Zaporozhye and Kherson regions.

A copy of the decree, which was released on the Ukrainian presidential website, stated: "Decrees by the president of the Russian Federation No. 147 of March 17, 2014; No. 71 of February 21, 2022; No. 72 of February 21; No. 685 of September 29, 2022; No. 686 dated September 29, 2022 and any other decisions, acts and agreements that have been passed, issued and made based on and/or in relation to the execution of the said decrees by the president of the Russian Federation shall be recognized as null and void, and therefore have no legal implications."

Following a coup in Ukraine in February 2014, the governments of Crimea and Sevastopol held a referendum to join Russia. Russian President Vladimir Putin issued a decree on March 17, 2014 to recognize Crimea as a sovereign and independent country. On March 18, Putin signed an agreement to incorporate Crimea and Sevastopol into Russia.

Putin on February 21, 2022 said Russia recognized the sovereignty of the DPR and LPR, and on September 29 the president signed a decree recognizing the independence of the Zaporozhye and Kherson regions. These areas earlier held referendums where most residents backed joining Russia. A grand ceremony took place in the Kremlin on September 30, where Putin signed agreements with the heads of the regions to incorporate these territories into Russia.