Ex-chief of the SBU Security Service of Ukraine, former presidential candidate Ihor Smeshko has said it is necessary to condemn the actions of the aggressor state, which began issuing Russian passports Donbas residents.
"I insist on the adoption of an additional package of sanctions against the Russian Federation. I believe the actions of the occupier are not only a flagrant violation of international law, an expression of frank disrespect for the Constitution of Ukraine, but also another step in the escalation of the conflict in the east of our country," he wrote for Gordonua.com.
He said 60 Ukrainians had already obtained Russian passports.
"They allowed their fingerprints to be taken and most importantly they officially swore allegiance to the aggressor. This means only one thing: Russia has launched the procedure for the legalization of occupation – an increase in the number of its troops, an additional infiltration of the region by its special services. It creates legal prerequisites for the official use of Russian troops against Ukraine under the guise of citizens of the Russian Federation," Smeshko said.
"I emphasize that if we continue to remain silent and do not take appropriate steps and if we don't introduce additional measures, Russia will subsequently begin issuing passports in the Ukrainian-controlled territories. This cannot be allowed!" he said.
According to the politician, Russia's actions are yet another act of blackmail, an attempt to achieve federalization and non-aligned status of Ukraine.
He called on Ukrainians living in the temporarily occupied territories to refrain from obtaining Russian passports and not to swear allegiance to the Russian Federation.