Russian President Putin Declares Martial Law in Four Annexed Provinces in Ukraine

Russian President Putin has declared martial law in the four Ukrainian provinces recently annexed by Russia. This will give the Russian-appointed authorities in those provinces more power to protect specific infrastructure and respond to the Ukrainian counter-offensive.

There will also be an “economic mobilization” in eight Russian regions bordering Ukraine.

Martial law or martial law is being introduced in the four Ukrainian provinces of Donetsk, Lugansk, Zaporizhia and Kherson, which Russia recently annexed. Still, fierce fighting with the Ukrainian army is raging in some places.

Under martial law, the Russian-appointed authorities in those four provinces will be given more power to protect “critical infrastructure” and respond to the Ukrainian counter-offensive to keep them occupied and annexed territories in Russian hands. The decision has already been signed and published and will take effect at midnight.

There will also be a new special council headed by Prime Minister Mishustin to coordinate security in the annexed areas. There may also be restrictions on entering and leaving the regions and public gatherings.

Putin also announced an “economic mobilization” in eight Russian regions bordering Ukraine. The Crimean Peninsula, which Russia annexed in 2014, is also included. As a result, the government can demand specific economic infrastructure to be used to supply the troops in Ukraine. But it is not yet clear how Putin intends to implement this concretely. Free movement to and from those regions is also restricted.

Russia annexed the four provinces in late September. However, it is not entirely clear whether the “new Russian territory” borders correspond to the Ukrainian provincial borders. Because some provinces are only partly in the hands of the Russians. Ukraine and the West do not recognize the annexation. Ukraine is also engaged in a counter-offensive, which has been particularly successful in the east of the country.

Although Russia warns the population in the south, in Kherson province, of Ukraine’s counter-attacks on civilian targets and calls for evacuation, the frontline is slowly moving forward. Ukraine, therefore, accuses Russia of “propaganda”. “The Russians are trying to scare the people of Kherson with fake newsletters about attacks by our army on the city and put on a propaganda show with an evacuation,” said the head of the presidential office on Telegram.

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