"The decree of Russian President Putin on the simplified procedure for obtaining Russian citizenship for residents of the occupied areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions is nothing but a deliberate escalation of aggression against our state and pressure on Ukraine's leadership," the council's press service quoted Turchynov as saying.
According to him, with the issuance of Russian passports to residents of the occupied territories of Donbas "Putin creates legal conditions for the official use of the Russian armed forces against Ukraine."
"This is related to the fact that Russian legislation allows the use of armed forces to protect Russian citizens outside Russian territory," Turchynov said.
He stressed that "there may be only one answer to that - strengthening our defense potential and a respective international response to the criminal actions of the Kremlin with an increase in the sanctions pressure on the aggressor country."
Russian President Vladimir Putin on April 24 signed a decree under which residents of the territories of Donetsk and Luhansk regions temporarily occupied by Russia have the right to apply for Russian citizenship under a simplified procedure.
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