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Donetsk People’s Republic switching over to Russian laws

May 27, 2014, 0:27 UTC+3 DONETSK
All ministries of the self-proclaimed republic already operate, the chairman of the DPR Supreme Council presidium said
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Denis Pushilin, the chairman of the DPR Supreme Council presidium

Denis Pushilin, the chairman of the DPR Supreme Council presidium

© ITAR-TASS/Konstantin Sazonchik

DONETSK, May 26. /ITAR-TASS/. The self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) in eastern Ukraine has started switching over to Russian laws, Denis Pushilin, the chairman of the DPR Supreme Council presidium, said Monday.

“Today the decision was made to start intensively switching over to Russian laws,” Pushilin said while speaking near the government building (former regional administration).

All ministries of the self-proclaimed republic already operate, he said.

Instability embraced Ukraine after the country saw a coup in February. New people were brought to power amid riots as security concerns caused President Viktor Yanukovich to leave the country the same month.

Massive protests against the new Ukrainian authorities erupted in Ukraine’s Russian-speaking southeastern territories after the secession of the Crimean Peninsula, which declared independence on March 11 and joined Russia on March 18 following a referendum.

Demonstrators in southeastern regions, who have been demanding the country’s federalization, seized some government buildings. Kiev has been conducting what it has dubbed “an antiterrorism operation” against pro-federalization activists. Russia, which does not recognize the new Kiev authorities, has said the operation is punitive.

The eastern Ukrainian Donetsk and Lugansk regions held referendums on May 11, in which most voters supported independence from Ukraine. After the plebiscite, DPR co-chairman Pushilin said the DPR asked Russia to adopt it as a constituent member.

Ukraine held presidential elections set by the coup-imposed authorities on Sunday, May 25. Billionaire businessman and politician Pyotr Poroshenko is leading in the election with 54.23% of the vote, with 90.21% of ballots counted, the Ukrainian Central Election Commission reported Monday.

Meanwhile, only 20% of polling stations were open in the eastern Ukrainian Donetsk and Lugansk regions during Sunday’s presidential election, the head of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly delegation to the Ukrainian election, Tana de Zulueta, said at a news conference on Monday.

She also said that the voting had not taken place in 10 out of 22 districts of the Donetsk Region and in 14 out of 23 districts in the Lugansk Region. More than 800 out of 3,908 polling stations were open, she said, adding that the voter turnout at these polling stations had been lower than across the country on the average.

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