Ukrainian President Signs Decree on Historical Ukrainian Territories in Russia

by Roman Cheplyk
Monday, January 22, 2024
Ukrainian President Signs Decree on Historical Ukrainian Territories in Russia

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has signed a significant decree titled “On the territories of the Russian Federation historically inhabited by Ukrainians

" This decree, which is published on the Ukrainian President's website, marks the Day of the National Assembly of Ukraine.

Key Points of the Decree:

  1. Historical Oppression of Ukrainians in Russia: The decree highlights centuries of systematic actions by Russia aimed at destroying the national identity of Ukrainians. It specifically mentions the oppression of Ukrainians and the violation of their rights in regions like Kuban, Starodubshchyna, Northern and Eastern Slobozhanshchyna within the modern territories of Krasnodar Krai, Belgorod, Bryansk, Voronezh, Kursk, and Rostov Oblasts in Russia.

  2. Russia's International Obligations: The decree stresses that Russia must uphold its international duties by ensuring that Ukrainians within its territory, particularly in historically Ukrainian lands, have the right to education in the Ukrainian language, as well as the freedom to use the language, and access to civil, social, cultural, and religious rights.

  3. Cabinet of Ministers' Responsibilities: The Ukrainian government is instructed to create an action plan with the help of international experts and the public. This plan is aimed at preserving the national identity of Ukrainians in Russia and addressing issues related to documenting crimes against Ukrainians in these areas, including policies of forced Russification and political repression.

  4. Counteracting Russian Disinformation: The decree calls for intensified efforts to challenge Russian disinformation about the history and current situation of Ukrainians in Russia, involving domestic and international experts and organizations.

  5. Promoting Interaction and Historical Awareness: The decree tasks the government with promoting interaction between Ukrainians and other peoples under Russian rule and disseminating information about the long history of Ukrainian statehood and the historical ties of lands inhabited by ethnic Ukrainians.

  6. Role of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs: The Ministry is directed to incorporate the decree’s provisions into a comprehensive strategy for Ukraine's engagement with the global Ukrainian community.

This decree represents a significant step by President Zelenskyy to acknowledge and address the historical and ongoing challenges faced by Ukrainians within the territory of the Russian Federation.

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