Andrei Illarionov, a Russian economist and former economic advisor to President Vladimir Putin, has explained why Russia needs a war in Donbas and the so-called "LPR/DPR" terrorist organizations.

The expert believes the "LPR/DPR" will become the Kremlin's bargaining chip, Glavred reports.

"It is necessary to use the correct terms: Russia doesn't need the 'DPR' and 'LPR,' it's Putin who needs them. But Putin is not Russia. Putin really needs the 'DPR' and 'LPR.' He needs them for two reasons. First, they are used like "screwdrivers" that could be constantly stuck in Ukraine's body to destabilize the situation within the country. Secondly, Putin hopes that, sooner or later, Ukraine will have leaders ready to exchange Crimea for 'DPR' and 'LPR.' In other words, he hopes there will be some future Ukrainian authorities that recognize Crimea as part of Russia, and in exchange for this, they will receive the recognition of 'DPR' and 'LPR'," he said.

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"Therefore, the 'DPR' and the 'LPR' is like a bargaining chip for possible "settlements" in the future between Russia and Ukraine," he added.