26/10/2014 1:09
RIA Novosti


Plans to Give Russian Passports to Ukrainians Spark Debate

Topic: Turbulence in Ukraine

Plans to Give Russian Passports to Ukrainians Spark Debate
19:18 25/02/2014
Tags: State Duma, Ilya Drozdov, Ukraine, Russia

MOSCOW, February 25 (RIA Novosti) – As Russian lawmakers called for passports to be issued to ethnic Russians in Ukraine, a parliamentary committee chair warned Tuesday that the issue was a powder keg that should be handled carefully.

On Monday, Ilya Drozdov, a deputy in the State Duma – the lower house of the Russian parliament – introduced a bill to simplify the procedure for ethnic Russian Ukrainians to obtain Russian citizenship.

Russia has condemned the uprising in Ukraine that culminated in the ouster of President Viktor Yanukovych at the weekend, and has expressed concern for ethnic Russians there.

Growing calls for ethnic Russians in Ukraine to be granted passports have drawn suggestions from some that Moscow may seek to claim a larger say in Ukrainian affairs by arguing that it is defending the interests of its own citizens. Russian military intervention in Georgia in 2008 was prompted by claims that the South Caucasus nation had launched a military assault on South Ossetia, a breakaway province occupied almost entirely by Russian passport-holders.

Drozdov, a deputy with the nationalist LDPR faction, said Tuesday that he might withdraw his bill in order to replace it with another draft backed by all factions in the Duma.

“Support from all factions is a 100 percent guarantee of it being passed,” he said, adding that the new bill could be ready Tuesday or Wednesday.

Leonid Slutsky, chairman of the Duma committee for Commonwealth of Independent States and Eurasian integration, said the bill deserved attention but warned that the idea should be tackled with caution.

“Ukraine is a gunpowder keg and any provocations could result in bloodshed,” he said.

Slutsky said it was too early to discuss potential help for predominantly Russian areas of neighboring Ukraine, such as Crimea. But he said a raft of measures would be drawn up in the near future.

He told journalists: “We will not abandon our brothers in Ukraine and more than a million of our compatriots in the current clashes. They have found themselves in a difficult position with the sudden impending collapse of the Russian-speaking sphere.”

On Sunday, Ukraine voted to repeal a 2012 law that made Russian an official language in parts of the country where it was a native tongue for at least 10 percent of the population.

Last week, the Financial Times quoted an unidentified senior Russian official as saying that Moscow could intervene to protect ethnic Russians in Crimea, home to a Russian naval base at Sevastopol.

“If Ukraine breaks apart, it will trigger a war. They will lose Crimea first [because] we will go in and protect [it], just as we did in Georgia,” the official was quoted as saying in a reference to the 2008 war with Georgia.

On Sunday, a senior US official warned Moscow not to send troops into Ukraine, saying to do so would be a “grave mistake.”

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov appeared to reject such speculation Tuesday.

“We have confirmed our principled position to not interfere in Ukraine’s internal affairs and expect all [foreign powers] to follow a similar logic,” he said.


  • Add to blog
  • Send to friend
  • Share

Add to blog

You may place this material on your blog by copying the link.

Publication code:


RIA NovostiPlans to Give Russian Passports to Ukrainians Spark DebatePlans to Give Russian Passports to Ukrainians Spark Debate

19:18 25/02/2014 As Russian lawmakers called for passports to be issued to ethnic Russians in Ukraine, a parliamentary committee chair warned Tuesday that the issue was a powder keg that should be handled carefully.>>

Send by e-mail

All fields are required!

Leave a comment
  • bielecIs there a plan in place?
    20:11, 25/02/2014
    Quote: - "We have confirmed our principled position to not interfere in Ukraine’s internal affairs and expect all [foreign powers] to follow a similar logic," [Lavrov] said.

    This expectation has been breached long before it was expressed. Everybody knows that Western countries have been interfering in Ukraine. Nuland has openly admitted it.

    So, what is the purpose of Lavrov's statement?
    • gauag10Wait and Watch
      13:07, 26/02/2014
      Dear bielec.
      Wait and watch.
      If Putin is not saying anything, this mean he knows what is coming soon. He is waiting for the moment. So should us. This is just going to get more interesting.
    • Mikhail1228A grave mistake..hahaha
      20:26, 25/02/2014
      On Sunday, a senior US official warned Moscow not to send troops into Ukraine, saying to do so would be a “grave mistake.”

      What in the hell could the USA do? Nothing is the answer!!
    • milantPassport
      01:22, 26/02/2014
      Russia should grant passport to Russians in whole world .
    • tec123Keep waiting Russia the West loves you..
      08:22, 26/02/2014
      Here we go again and this has been talked upon many of times here over the years but for some strange reasons Russia still plays the waiting game.
      Why do Russia has to wait on this do they Russia thinks France, US, Isreal or the British would second think protecting their citisens or interest aboard no they will not and moreover they don't give a shit what other thinks so why should Russia?
      This is why the West plays Russia as they want. This Ukraine problem was planed to esculate when the winter game was in full swing knowing Putin would not risk any moves whiles the games is on, and by the time the game is over they the bandits in Ukraine and their masters would of gotten rid of the Prisedent and Putin is left with his head spinning what to do now?
      If Russia lose Ukraine Putin will be seen as "playing mass but dont want to get powdered"
    • mythoslightThere is a plane...
      11:47, 26/02/2014
      ..like there was in Georgia and like it always has been whenever the West is ready for another Drang nach osten. The western fascist forces did their "shock & awe" move in the shadow of the Olympic´s, or so they think. Now it´s as everyone predicted chaos and the ball is in the Russian court.

      Washington are anxiously awaiting a Russian response to this blatant declaration of war, left at it´s doorstep but Russia is in no hurry. One minister saying one thing and the other later denying it is typical Russian tactic in this regard to keep them that way.

      Washington/NATO do not want to get it´s noose smashed and it´s Grandiose delusional disorder ridiculed like they did in Georgia and eventually had to chickened out, but that definitely remains an option depending on how hard they keep pushing and threatening.

      Russia can live with a partitioned Ukraine where the developed South/eastern part eventually joins Russia proper in all but name (except maybe for Crimea). NATO will get closer but so will the Iskanders, locked on to them. But Nuland,Kagan & Pyatt, having spent 5 billions dont want to end up with a backwards and useless western Ukraine when the coast and ports of the Black sea is what they really are after. If Russia has to go in to protect it´s citizens (judging from Georgia, the passport issue will be solved in an instant)there is nothing the US can do short of assaulting Russia with nukes and they know it.
      • cheruskTotal war is what the Nobel Peace price is awaiting
        14:51, 26/02/2014
        The Beast has planned war, more wars simultaneously. Zionist dominated NATO is waiting for the Russian military reation (the long awaited casus belli), then, in a tit-for-tat action a big war will blow out involving Iran, Syria, Venezuela and part of Europe that will be gobbled by the Western Evil Empire.
      • patriiot(no title)
        23:44, 26/02/2014
        Russia needs to take back its teritory who was kidnapped Chruschev from Russia 1954.So Russia has all of rights on that teritory and must send its military forces in line from Harkov to Sevastopol.It is absolutely clear everyone.

      © 2014  RIA Novosti
      Some material may be inappropriate for those under 18