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Donetsk People's Republic

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Title: Donetsk People's Republic  
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Subject: United Armed Forces of Novorossiya, 2014 pro-Russian unrest in Ukraine, 2014–15 Russian military intervention in Ukraine, Luhansk People's Republic, Denis Pushilin
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Donetsk People's Republic

Donetsk People's Republic
  • Донецкая Народная Республика (Russian)
    Donetskaya Narodnaya Respublika
  • Донецька Народна Республіка (Ukrainian)
    Donets'ka Narodna Respublika
Flag Coat of arms
Anthem: Vstavay, Donbass! (Arise, Donbass!)
Territory claimed by the Donetsk People's Republic
Territory claimed by the Donetsk People's Republic
Capital Donetsk
Largest city capital (other large cities with more than 50,000 people: Makiivka, Horlivka, Yenakiieve, Torez, Snizhne, Shakhtarsk)
Official languages Russian[1]
Ethnic groups
Religion Russian Orthodox (official)[2]
Government Unitary semi-presidential republic
 -  Prime Minister Alexander Zakharchenko[3]
 -  Chairman of the People's Soviet Denis Pushilin[4]
Legislature People's Soviet
Independence from Ukraine
 -  Declared 7 April 2014 
 -  Referendum 11 May 2014 
 -  Referendum ratified 12 May 2014[5] 
 -  Agreement to form a confederation with the Luhansk People's Republic signed 24 May 2014[6] 
 -  estimate 2,682,357 (Estimate based on pre-war populations of cities and raions completely or majoritarily controlled by Donetsk People's Republic: Debaltseve, Dokuchaievsk, Donetsk, Gorlovka, Khartsyzk, Kirovske, Makiivka, Shakhtarsk, Snizhne, Torez, Yasynuvata, Yenakiieve, Amvrosievskiy, Novoazovskiy, Shakhtarskiy, Starobeshevskiy, Telmanovskiy, Yasinuvatskiy): 55.6% of the population of the Donetsk Oblast in Ukraine, before the Donbass status referendum in Donetsk, 2014.
Currency Ukrainian hryvnia (most common); Russian ruble (less common); Euro, U.S. dollar (legal but rarely used) [7]
Novorossia ruble (proposed)[8]
Time zone Moscow Time[9] (UTC+3)
Drives on the right

The Donetsk People's Republic (DPR or DNR) (Russian: Доне́цкая Наро́дная Респу́блика, tr. Donétskaya Naródnaya Respúblika; IPA: , Ukrainian: Донецька Народна Республіка, Donets'ka Narodna Respublika) is an unrecognized state, supported by several rebel groups[10][11][12] based in the Donetsk oblast of Ukraine, where it controls territory. It is a self-proclaimed state whose existence is unrecognized by the international community, that receives humanitarian and military support from Russia.[13][14][15] It was also a constituent state of the self-proclaimed confederation of Novorossiya (referencing the corresponding historical region and its name), and since February 2015 assigned itself the status of successor to the historic self-declared Donetsk–Krivoy Rog Soviet Republic.[16][17] On 20 May 2015 the leadership of the Federal State of Novorossiya announced the termination of the confederation 'project'.[18]

The entity was declared on 7 April 2014 by a group of armed and masked militants led by Russian Col. Igor Girkin[19] who at the time occupied the Regional Administration and the City Hall buildings in Donetsk.[20][21][22][23][24] Occupation of government buildings then spread to other cities in the region.[25]

The self-proclaimed state's activities were, as of May 2014, headed by the [26] The Donetsk People's Republic has been recognized only by the unrecognized Republic of South Ossetia, on 27 June 2014.[27]

On 15 April 2014, acting President Olexander Turchynov announced the start of a military counteroffensive to confront the pro-Russian militants, and on 17 April, tensions de-escalated as Russia, the US, and the EU agreed on a roadmap to defuse the Ukraine crisis.[28][29] However, officials of the People's Republic ignored the agreement and vowed to continue their occupations until a referendum is accepted or the government in Kiev resigns.[30] Since the agreement, the Security Service of Ukraine continued to detain Russians entering the country with large amounts of money and military gear.[31]

On 11 May, status referendums were held in Donetsk and Luhansk, where separatist leaders claimed that a vast majority of participants voted in support of the establishment of the People's Republics.[32][33] On 24 May, the two separatist republics signed an agreement confirming their merger into a confederation called the Federal State of Novorossiya.[6] Between April and July 2014 some parts of Ukraine's Donetsk Oblast were brought under the control of the Donetsk People's Republic; however the Armed Forces of Ukraine regained many of these areas in its early July 2014 post-ceasefire government offensive during the War in Donbass.[34] This offensive led to the Donetsk People's Republic only controlling the areas near to the city of Donetsk.[35] In the pro-Russian forces August 2014 counter-offensive the Donetsk People's Republic with the help of Russian troops and arms gained territory again.[34][36]

Over 50% of the total Donetsk oblast population (according to a November 2014 rebel estimates, which is roughly in line with the estimate of the Ukrainian government), around 1,870,000 people, live under separatist rule.[37] Although the rebels do not have control of most of Donetsk Oblast, this number is relatively high since the DPR has been controlling major urban areas and cities like Donetsk and Horlivka.[37]

In an effort to stabilize the ceasefire in the region, particularly the disputed and strategically important town of Debaltseve, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has called for a UN-led peacekeeping operation to monitor the compliance with the agreement achieved during the latest round of Minsk peace talks.[38]


Ukrainian Riot Police guarding the entrance to the RSA building on March 7
Ukrainian military roadblocks in Donetsk oblast on May 8

According to Lucian Kim of Slate, " ... the Maidan protest, characterized by the Kremlin as a Western-sponsored armed coup, is being crudely imitated in towns across the Donetsk region. "If the guys on the Maidan could revolt, why can't we?" has been the pro-Russian supporters' motto ... ".[39]

Similar attempts to seize the Regional State Administration (RSA) building have been occurring since pro-Russian protests began in the Eastern and Southern regions of Ukraine in the wake of the 2014 Ukrainian revolution. Pro-Russian militants previously occupied the Donetsk RSA from 1 to 6 March, before being removed by the Security Service of Ukraine.[40][41] According to Ukrainian authorities the seizure of RSA's are part of "a script which has been written in the Russian Federation" to destabilize Ukraine and bring in Russian troops executed by "about 1,500 radicals in each region who spoke with clear Russian accents".[42]

Regional public opinion

Donetsk and Luhansk People's Republics

In a poll conducted by Kiev International Institute of Sociology in the first half of February 2014, 33.2% of polled in Donetsk Oblast believed "Ukraine and Russia must unite into a single state".[43]

According to a poll conducted by the Institute of Social Research and Policy Analysis, 66% of Donetsk residents view their future in a united Ukraine, 4.7% support separatism, 18.2% support joining Russia, while 31.6% wanted a united Ukraine with expansion of autonomy for Donetsk region, with only 18.6% in support of current status[44] A second poll conducted 26–29 March showed that 77% of residents condemned the takeover of administrative buildings, while 16% support such actions. Furthermore, 40.8% of Donetsk citizens support rallies for Ukraine's unity, while 26.5% support rallies which are pro-Russia.[45]

Flags of the Donetsk Republic and Russia in Donetsk, 8 March 2014
The Barricades From Ukraine Have Been Seen After

While support for regional independence is low, only a third of polled Donetsk inhabitants identified themselves as "citizens of Ukraine", preferring instead "Russian-speaking residents of Ukraine" or "residents of Donbass".[46]

The New York Times stated on 11 April 2014 that many locals consider it a "crackpot project".[47]

The Kiev International Institute of Sociology released a second study with polling data taken from 8–16 April. 18.1% of Donetsk oblast residents support the recent armed seizures of administrative buildings in the region, while 72% disapprove of the current actions. Roughly 25% in the Donbas region said they would attend secessionist rallies in favor of joining Russia. Most in Donetsk believe that the disarmament and disbanding of illegal radical groups is crucial to preserving national unity. 12.4% are in favor of Ukraine and Russia uniting into a single state, ; 27.5% in Donetsk were in favor of regional secession from Ukraine to join Russia, 38.4% support federalization, 41.1% support a unitary Ukraine with decentralization of power and broadening of rights of regions, and 10.6% support the current unitary state.[48][49]

On 15 June 2015 several hundreds protested in the center of Donetsk . The protesters, mostly from Oktyabrskiy region of the town, called the military command to remove "Grad" launchers from this residential area that are notoriously used to fire at Ukrainian positions, provoking return fire and causing civilian casualties.[50] Speaking to the crowd Zakharchenko admitted DNR forces are indeed shelling from residential areas (mentioning school 41 specifically), but said that "the punishment of the enemy is everyone's shared responsibility".[51]

In a poll conducted in August 2015 in 19 cities of the Donetsk oblast with 6500 respondents, only 29% supported DPR and 10% considered themselves to be "Russian patriots".[52]


According to the Kyiv Post, a number of militants in a standoff with police in Mariupol demand the abolition of biometric passports and an end to vaccinations.[31]

Denis Pushilin, the self-proclaimed chairman of the republic stated that he does not envision the Donetsk People's Republic becoming an independent state, instead preferring to join a renewed Russian Empire.[53]

11 May autonomy referendum

On 7 May, separatist rebels in Donetsk and Luhansk said that they will proceed with the referendum that will be held 11 May, disregarding Vladimir Putin's appeal to delay it.[54] "The referendum will take place as planned. The ballots have been already arrived at the polling stations," said Vasily Nikitin, from the press service which is organizing the referendum in Luhansk.[55]

The referendum organizers claimed that 89% voted in favor of self-rule, with 10% against, on a turnout of nearly 75%. The results of the referendums were not officially recognised by any government, including those of Ukraine, the United States, the countries of the European Union, and Russia.[56] Germany and the United States stated that the referendums had "no democratic legitimacy",[57][58] while the Russian government expressed "respect" for the results and urged a "civilised" implementation.[59][60]

On the day after the referendum, the Republic's council proclaimed Donetsk to be a sovereign state with an indefinite border and "ask[ed] Russia to consider the issue of our republic's accession into the Russian Federation."[61] It also announced that it will not participate in the presidential election to take place on 25 May. In response, "the Kremlin called for dialogue between the government in Kiev and the south-east regions of the country, suggesting that a Crimea-style annexation of the region for Moscow is not on the cards."[62]



Pro-Russian separatists occupying the Donetsk RSA building on April 7, 2014

On Sunday, 6 April 2014, between 1,000 and 2,000[24] pro-Russian rebels attended a rally in Donetsk pushing for a Crimea-style referendum on independence from Ukraine.[63] It was claimed by Ukrainian media that the proposed referendum has no status-quo option.[64] After which, 200 separatists[65] (according to Igor Dyomin, a spokesman for Donetsk local police, about 1,000[24]) pro-Russian rebels stormed and took control of the first two floors of the building, breaking down doors and smashing windows. The administration headquarters were empty, with only guards inside, as government officials would not work there on Sundays.[63] The separatists demanded that if an extraordinary session was not held by officials, announcing a referendum to join Russia, they would declare unilateral control by forming a "People's Mandate" at noon on 7 April, and dismiss all elected council members and MPs.[66][67][68] The people who voted within the RSA were not elected to the positions they assumed.[69] According to the Russian ITAR-TASS the declaration was voted by some regional legislators; however, there are claims that neither the Donetsk city council nor district councils of the city delegated any representatives to the session.[70][71]

The political leadership initially consisted of Pavel Gubarev,[72][73] a former member of the neo-Nazi Russian National Unity paramilitary group and former Communist Progressive Socialist Party of Ukraine,[74][75][76][77] who was also arrested on charges of separatism and illegal seizure of power but released in a hostage swap.[78][79] Denis Pushilin self-appointed as chairman of the government,[80][81] while Igor Kakidzyanov has been named as the commander of the "People's Army".[82] Alexander Borodai, a Russian citizen claiming to be involved in the Russian annexation of Crimea, was appointed as 'Prime Minister'. On 6 April, the group's leaders announced that a referendum, on whether Donetsk Oblast should "join the Russian Federation", would take place "no later than May 11th, 2014."[83][84] Additionally, the group's leaders have appealed to Russian President Vladimir Putin to send Russian peacekeeping forces to the region.[83][84][85]

On the morning of 8 April, the 'Patriotic Forces of Donbass', a pro-Kiev group that was formed on 15 March earlier that year by 13 pro-Kyiv NGOs, political parties and individuals,[86] unrelated to Pavel Gubarev.[91][1] In the afternoon of 8 April, about a thousand people rallied in front of the RSA listening to speeches about the Donetsk People's Republic and to Soviet and Russian music.[92]

People carrying the DPR flag in Donetsk, 9 May 2014

According to an article from the Kyiv Post on 10 April, most of the protesters were 50 years or older, while inside the RSA building, many of the occupiers are younger but from other cities like Mariupol, Kherson and Mykolaiv. The occupiers include both men and women.[64] According to "Novosti Donbassa", unstated number of Russian citizens, including one leader of a far-right militant group, have also taken part in the events.[93] The OSCE reported that all the main institutions of the city observed by the Monitoring Team seemed to be working normally as of 16 April.[94] On 22 April, separatists agreed to release the session hall of the building along with two floors to state officials.[95] The 9th and 10th floors were later released on 24 April.[96]

On the second day of the Republic, organizers decided to pour all of their alcohol out and announce a prohibition law after issues arose due to excess drinking in the building.[97]

A line to enter a polling place in Donetsk city, 11 May

On 30 April, Donetsk Republic chairman Pushilin flew to Moscow and held a press conference.[98]

On 7 May, Russian president [104] SBU stated that this tape is a definitive proof of the direct involvement of Russian government with preparations for the referendum.[100]

Ukrainian authorities released separatist leader Pavel Gubarev and two others in exchange for three people detained by the Donetsk Republic.[105]

The DPR has cultivated relations with European far-right and nationalist politicians and writers, including French far-right MEP Jean-Luc Schaffhauser, Italian nationalist Alessandro Musolino, German neo-Nazi journalist Manuel Ochsenreiter, and Emmanuel Leroy, a far-right adviser to Marine Le Pen, leader of the National Front.[106][107]

Territorial control

Territory in Donetsk Oblast under the control of the Donetsk People's Republic or the Lugansk People's Republic (in pink), as of 2015.

From April to July 2014 the unrecognized republic controlled most of Ukraine's Donetsk Oblast stretching south from the city of Mariupol on the Azov Sea north to Sviatohirsk and Sloviansk near the border with Kharkiv Oblast. However, much of this territory has been brought under control of the Government of Ukraine and the area under the control of the rebels has been mainly reduced to Donetsk city.[108] Armed Forces of Ukraine took control of Mariupol early in the conflict and it now serves as the capital of Donetsk Oblast due to the ongoing conflict between Government and Separatist factions.[109]

Peace proposals

On 1 September 2014, DPR rebels announced that they would respect Ukraine's sovereignty in exchange for autonomy.[110] But they withdrew this offer a few days later.[111]

On 12 February 2015 DPR and LPR leaders Alexander Zakharchenko and Igor Plotnitsky signed the Minsk II agreement.[112] In the Minsk agreement it is agreed to introduce amendments to the Ukrainian constitution "the key element of which is decentralisation" and the holding of elections "On temporary Order of Local Self-Governance in Particular Districts of Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts, based in the line set up by the Minsk Memorandum as of 19 September 2014"[112][113] Representatives of the DPR and LPR continue to forward their proposals concerning Minsk II to the Trilateral Contact Group on Ukraine.[114]

On 20 May 2015 the leadership of the Federal State of Novorossiya announced the termination of the confederation 'project'.[18][115]


Donetsk People's Republic
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
the Donetsk People's Republic
Then Chairman of the People's Council Denis Pushilin speaks at a Victory Day (9 May) rally in Donetsk.


Early April 2014 a Donetsk People's Council was formed out of protesters who occupied the building of the Donetsk Regional Council on 6 April 2014.[66][67][116]

The first full Government of the Donetsk People's Republic was appointed on 16 May 2014.[1] It consisted of several ministers who were previously Donetsk functionaries, a member of the Makiivka City Council, a former Donetsk prosecutor, a former member of the special police Alpha Group, a member of the Party of Regions (who allegedly coordinated "Titushky" (pro-Viktor Yanukovych hooligans) during Euromaidan) and Russian citizens.[1] The system of government is described by its deputy defense minister Fyodor Berezin as aiming to build as military communism.[117]

Administration proper in DPR territories is performed by those authorities which performed these functions prior to the War in Donbass.[118]

Current distribution of posts

Aleksandr Zakharchenko takes an oath of office as the Prime Minister of DPR, 8 August 2014

On 12 November 2014 Head of the Donetsk People's Republic Aleksandr Zakharchenko decreed that the following people are members of the Council of Ministers.[119][120]

  • Head: Aleksandr Zakharchenko
  • Prime Minister: Aleksandr Zakharchenko
  • Deputy Prime Minister: Alexander Borodai
  • Minister of Defence: Vladimir Kononov
  • Minister of Justice: Ekaterina Filippova
  • Minister of Income and Fees: Alexander Timofeev
  • Minister of Construction: Vasily Rassadnikov
  • Minister of Health: Viktor Kuchkovoy
  • Minister of Education and Science: Igor Kostenok[121]
  • Minister of Youth, Sports and Tourism: Mikhail Mishin
  • Minister of Transport: Semyon Kuzmenko[122]
  • Minister of Labour and Social Policy: Olga Malinovskaya
  • Minister of Finances: Ekaterina Matyushchenko
  • Minister of Emergencies: Alexei Kostrubitsky
  • Minister of State Security: Andrey Pinchuk
  • Minister of Interior: Oleg Bereza
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs: Alexander Kofman
  • Minister of Communication: Viktor Yatsenko
  • Minister of Economic Development: Evgenia Samokhina

In 2015, Russian media reported that the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs' website listed the DPR's vice-minister of defense, Sergey Velikorodny, as wanted in Russia for criminal offenses.[123] On 12 May the page was removed without explanation.[124] Velikorodny originally fled to Crimea and then joined Igor Girkin's militia en route to Donetsk.[125] In March 2015 another minister of the republic, Oleg Bugrov, was arrested in Saint Petersburg, officially for economic crimes[126] but the official reason was questioned by independent media in Russia.[127]


The parliament of the Donetsk People's Republic is the People's Soviet[128] and has 100 deputies.[129]


Parliamentary elections of the Donetsk and Luhansk People's Republics were held on 2 November 2014.[129] People of at least 30 years old who "permanently resided" in Donetsk People's Republic the last 10 years were electable for four years.[129] Ukraine urged Russia to use its influence to stop the election "to avoid a frozen conflict".[130] The European Union and the rest of the world did not recognize the elections.[131] Russia on the other hand stated at the time that it "will of course recognise the results of the election"; Russia's Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov stated that the election "will be important to legitimise the authorities there".[132] Ukraine held the 2014 Ukrainian parliamentary election on 26 October 2014; these were boycotted by the Donetsk People's Republic and hence voting for it did not take place in Ukraine's eastern districts controlled by forces loyal to the Donetsk People's Republic.[130][132] Russia's foreign minister stated that the Russian Federation will respect the election; however, it was clarified that while the Russian Federation respects the election it does not mean that Russia is planning on recognizing the results.[133]

Political rally in the DPR, 20 December 2014

On 2 July 2015 Donetsk People's Republic leader Aleksandr Zakharchenko ordered local DPR elections to be held on 18 October 2015 "in accordance with the Minsk II agreements".[134] According to Zakharchenko this move meant that the DNR had "independently start to implement the Minsk agreements".[134] Zakharchenko assured "the elections will take place 'on the basis of Ukraine's Law on temporary self-rule status of individual districts of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions' in so far as they are not at variance with the constitution and laws of the DPR".[134] The 2015 Ukrainian local elections are set for 25 October 2015.[135] Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko responded (also on 2 July 2015) that if this Zakharchenko initiative to local DPR elections would be upheld this would be "extremely irresponsible and will have devastating consequences for the process of deescalation of tension in certain areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions".[134] (On 6 July 2015 the Luhansk People's Republic (LPR) leader (LPR) Igor Plotnitsky set elections for "mayors and regional heads" for 1 November 2015 in territory under his control.[136])

On 6 October 2015 the DNR and LPR leadership postponed their planned elections to 21 February 2016.[137] This happened 4 days after a [138] Also during the meeting it is believed that Russian President Vladimir Putin agreed to use his influence to not allow the DPR and Luhansk People's Republic election to take place on 18 October 2015 and 1 November 2015.[138] In the weeks and days before 6 October the election campaign for the planned local DPR election of 18 October 2015 was in full swing.[139] In this campaign 90% of the advertising was done by Donetsk Republic.[139]

Political parties

Political parties active in the DPR include Donetsk Republic, the Communist Party of the Donetsk People's Republic, Free Donbass, and the New Russia Party. Donetsk Republic and the Communists endorsed Prime Minister Alexander Zakharchenko's candidature for the premiership in 2014.[140][141] In these elections the Communists were banned from participating independently because they had "made too many mistakes" in their submitted documents.[142]

In the internationally unrecognized elections held by the People's Republics in 2014, Donetsk Republic gained a majority in the DPR People's Soviet with 68.53% of the vote and 68 seats. Free Donbass, including candidates from the Russian-nationalist extremist New Russia Party, won 31.65% of the vote and 32 seats.


Problems of governance

Police in Donetsk wearing insignia related to the Donetsk People's Republic, 20 September 2014

OSCE monitors met with the self-proclaimed mayor of Sloviansk, Volodymyr Pavlenko, on 20 June 2014.[143] According to him, sewage systems in Sloviansk had collapsed, resulting in the release of least 10,000 litres of untreated sewage into the river Sukhyi Torets, a tributary of the Seversky Donets. He called this an "environmental catastrophe", and said that it had the potential to affect both Russia and Ukraine.[143]

The DPR imposed martial law on 16 July.[144]

As of May 2014, the Ukrainian Government was paying wages and pensions for the inhabitants of the Donetsk People's Republic.[145][146][147] The closing of bank branches led to problems in receiving these,[148][149][150] especially since the National Bank of Ukraine ordered banks to suspend financial transactions in places which are not controlled by the Ukrainian authorities on 7 August 2014.[151] Only the Oschadbank continued to function in territories controlled by the DPR, but it also closed its branches there on 1 December 2014.[151][152] In response, tens of thousands of pensioners have registered their address as being in Ukrainian-controlled areas while still living in separatist-controlled areas, and must travel outside of separatist areas to collect their pensions on a monthly basis.[153]

In October 2014 the Donetsk People's Republic announced the creation of its own central bank and tax office, obliging residents to register under their Donetsk People's Republic and pay taxes to it.[154] Some local entrepreneurs refused to register.[154]

According to the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine a number of local mutinies are taken place due to unpaid wages and pensions, the Council claims that on 24 November 2014 the local "Women Resistance Battalion" presented to Zakharchenko an ultimatum to get out of Donetsk in two months.[155]

On 4 September 2015 there was a sudden change in the republic's government, where Denis Pushilin replaced Andrey Purgin in the role of speaker of People's Council and in his first decision, fired Aleksey Aleksandrov, the council's chief of staff, Purgin's close ally. This happened in absence of Purgin and Aleksandrov who were held at the border between Russia and DPR, preventing their return to the republic. Aleksandrov was accused of "destructive activities" and "attempt to illegally cross the border" by the republic's Ministry of Public Security. Russian and Ukrainian media commented on these events as of yet another coup in the republic's authorities.[156][157]


By late October 2014 many banks and other businesses in the Donetsk People's Republic were shut and people were often left without social benefits payments.[154] Since then the territory controlled by it and the Luhansk People's Republic are under a de facto economic blockade from the Ukrainian authorities.[158] Smuggling is widespread.[158]

Reuters reported (late October 2014) long lines at soup kitchens.[154] In the same month in at least one factory, factory workers did not receive wages anymore but only food rations.[159]

By June 2015, due to logistical and transport problems, prices in DPR-controlled territory are significantly higher than in territory controlled by Ukraine.[118] This led to an increase of supplies (of more expensive products and those of lower quality) from Russia.[118]

Mines and heavy-industry facilities damaged by shelling were forced to close, undermining the wider chain of economic ties in the region.[159] Three industrial facilities were under Donetsk People's Republic "temporary management" by late October 2014.[159] By early June 2015 80% of companies that were physically located in the Donetsk People's Republic had been re-registered on territory under Ukrainian control.[158]

Donetsk People's Republic official often promise financial support from Russia, without giving specific details.[154] Prime Minister Aleksandr Zakharchenko late October 2014 stated that "We have the Russian Federation's agreement in principle on granting us special conditions on gas (deliveries)".[154] Zakharchenko also claimed that "And, finally, we managed to link up with the financial and banking structure of the Russian Federation".[154] When Reuters tried to get more details from a source close to Zakharchenko its only reply was "Money likes silence".[154] Early October 2014 Zakharchenko had stated "The economy will be completely, if possible, oriented towards the Russian market. We consider Russia our strategic partner", according to Zakharchenko this would "secure our economy from impacts from outside, including from Ukraine".[160] According to Yury Makohon, from the Ukrainian National Institute for Strategic Studies, "Trade volume between Russia and Donetsk Oblast has seen a massive slump since the beginning of 2014".[161] Since Russia does not recognize the legal status of the self-proclaimed republic all the trade it does with it is on the basis of Ukrainian law.[158]

Joining DPR military formations or its civil services has become one of the few guaranties for a stable income in the DPR.[118]

DPR authorities have created a multi-currency zone in which both the rouble (Russia's currency) and the hryvnia (Ukraine's currency) can be used, and also the Euro and U.S. Dollar.[118][160] Cash shortages are widespread and, due to a lack of roubles, the hryvnia is the most-used currency.[118]

Since late February 2015, the DPR-controlled territory received its natural gas directly from Russia, which is opposed by Ukraine.[162] According to Russia Ukraine should pay for these deliveries while Ukraine claims it does not receive payments for the supplies from the DPR-controlled territory.[162][163][164] On 2 July 2015, Ukrainian Energy Minister Volodymyr Demchyshyn announced that he "did not expect" that Ukraine would supply natural gas to territory controlled by separatist troops in the 2015 - 2016 heating season.[165]

Donetsk People's Republic is setting up its own mobile network operator called Feniks, to be fully operational at the end of the summer of 2015.[166] According to Kyivstar Feniks illegally uses equipment that they officially gave up in territory controlled by pro-Russian separatists on 5 February 2015.[166] Prime Minister Zakharchenko on 18 April 2015 issued a decree stating that all equipment that Kyivstar gave up falls under the control of the separatists in order to "meet the needs of the population in the communication services".[166]

In June 2015 the DPR authorities announced start of military pension payments in US dollars.[167]

Novorossia Ruble

The Novorossia Ruble (Coat of arms of Russia.[168]

The currency will be issued by the Central Republican Bank of Donetsk and Luhansk People's Republics. The first notes were produced in December 2014.[169]

The printed bills are in denominations of 5, 25 and 100 rubles.[170]

Novorossia rubles
5-ruble bill 
25-ruble bill 
100-ruble bill 


The DPR's main media mouthpiece is Donetsk News Agency.[171]

Human rights

War crimes and abuses on the territory of DPR

An 18 November 2014 United Nations report on eastern Ukraine stated that the Donetsk People's Republic was in a state of "total breakdown of law and order".[172] The report noted "cases of serious human rights abuses by the armed groups continued to be reported, including torture, arbitrary and incommunicado detention, summary executions, forced labour, sexual violence, as well as the destruction and illegal seizure of property may amount to crimes against humanity".[172] The November report also stated "the HRMMU continued to receive allegations of sexual and gender-based violence in the eastern regions. In one reported incident, members of the pro-Russian Vostok Battalion "arrested" a woman for violating a curfew and beat her with metal sticks for three hours. The woman was also raped by several pro-Russian rebels from the battalion. The report also states that the UN mission "continued to receive reports of torture and ill-treatment by the Ukrainian law enforcement agencies and volunteer battalions and by the (pro-Russian separatist) armed groups, including beating, death threats, cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, and lack of access to medical assistance."[173] In a 15 December 2014 press conference in Kiev, UN Assistant Secretary-General for human rights Ivan Šimonović stated that the majority of human rights violations were committed in areas controlled by pro-Russian rebels.[174]

The United Nations report also accused the Ukrainian Army and Ukrainian (volunteer) territorial defense battalions, including the neo-Nazi Azov Battalion,[175][176] of human rights abuses such as illegal detention, torture and ill-treatment of DPR and LPR supporters, noting official denials.[172][177] Amnesty International reported on 24 December 2014 that pro-government volunteer battalions were blocking Ukrainian aid convoys from entering separatist-controlled territory.[178]

On 24 July, Human Rights Watch accused the pro-Russian fighters of not taking measures to avoid encamping in densely populated civilian areas."[179][180] It also accused Ukrainian government forces and pro-government volunteer battalions of indiscriminate attacks on civilian areas, stating that "The use of indiscriminate rockets in populated areas violates international humanitarian law, or the laws of war, and may amount to war crimes."[179][180]

A report by the OHCHR Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights that was released on 2 March 2015 described media postings and online videos which indicated that the pro-Russian armed groups of the Donetsk People's Republic carried out "summary, extrajudicial or arbitrary executions" of captured Ukrainian soldiers. In one incident, corpses of Ukrainian servicemen were found with "their hands tied with white electrical cable" after the pro-Russian rebel groups captured Donetsk's airport. In January one of the self-proclaimed leaders of the Donetsk People's Republic claimed that the rebel forces were detaining up to five "subversives" between the ages of 18 and 35 per day. A number of captured prisoners of war were forced to march in Donetsk while being assaulted by rebel soldiers and onlookers. The report also said that Ukrainian law enforcement agencies had engaged in a "pattern of enforced disappearances, secret detention and ill-treatment" of people suspected of "separatism" and "terrorism".[181] The report also mentions videos of members of one particular pro-Russian unit talking about running a torture facility in the basement of a Luhansk library. The head of the unit in question was the pro-Russian separatist commander Aleksandr Biednov, known as "Batman" (who was later killed) and the "head" of the torture chamber was a rebel called "Maniac" who "allegedly used a hammer to torture prisoners and surgery kit to scare and extract confessions from prisoners."[181][182]

Allegations of anti-semitism

On Passover eve, alleged members of the Donetsk Republic,[183] carrying the flag of the Russian Federation, passed out a leaflet to Jews that informed all Jews over the age of 16 that they would have to report to the Commissioner for Nationalities in the Donetsk Regional Administration building and register their property and religion. It also claimed that Jews would be charged a $50 'registration fee'.[184] If they did not comply, they would have their citizenship revoked, face 'forceful expulsion' and see their assets confiscated. The leaflet stated the purpose of registration was because "Jewish community of Ukraine supported Bendera Junta," and "oppose the pro-Slavic People's Republic of Donetsk."[183] The incident was reported by Jewish community members,[185] and security at the synagogue confirmed that the men returned again on 16 April to further press their point.[186]

The authenticity of the leaflet could not be independently verified.[187] On the New York Times, Brendan Nyhan described the fliers as "most likely a hoax" and referred to the media coverage of an "apparently bogus story".[188] According to Efraim Zuroff of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, the leaflets looked like some sort of provocation, and an attempt to paint the pro-Russian forces as anti-semitic.[189] The chief rabbi of Donetsk stated that the flyer was a fake meant to discredit the self-proclaimed republic,[190] and saying that anti-Semitic incidents in eastern Ukraine are "rare, unlike in Kiev and western Ukraine".[191] France 24 also reported on the questionable authenticity of the leaflets.[192] The Israeli newspaper Haaretz noted in its headline that the flier was "now widely seen as fake".[193] On The New Republic, Julia Ioffe also dismissed this as "a provocation", noting that it was likely to be a "tactic to smear the so-called anti-Maidan" movement.[194]

Donetsk People's Republic chairman Denis Pushilin initially confirmed that the flyers were distributed by his organization, but denied any connection to the leaflet's content.[184] Pushilin later denied at a press conference that the DPR had anything to do with the flyer, calling it provocation and a "complete lie".[195]

The barricade outside the Donetsk RSA.

According to Donetsk city chief rabbi Pinchas Vishedski, the press secretary of the self-proclaimed republic, Aleksander Kriakov, is "the most famous anti-Semite in the region,"[196] and believes the men were 'trying to use the Jewish community in Donetsk as an instrument in the conflict.'[185]

According to Michael Salberg, director of the international affairs at the New York City-based Anti-Defamation League, it is currently unclear if the leaflets were issued by the pro-Russian leadership or a splinter group operating within the pro-Russian camp or someone else.[183] National Post reported: "Jewish leaders in the city have said they see the incident as a provocation, rather than a real threat to their community of about 17,000 people."[197]

Ukraine's Security Service announced it had launched an investigation on the matter.[198]

On 17 April, pro-Russian separatists aided by Russian military specialists seized a TV tower providing signals to cities in the Donetsk region. Ukrainian channels were removed from air, with 'Russian propaganda channels given the frequencies'. On 20 April, which the Euro-Asian Congress noted was Adolf Hitler's birthday, activists boasted about their imminent "victory" in anti-Semitic terms. "Here, from Sloviansk, we are inflicting a powerful information conceptual blow to the biblical Zionist zombie broadcasting." They then presented a lecture by former Russian Conceptual Party Unity leader Konstantin Petrov, who the EAJC described as a "anti-Semitic neo-pagan national-Stalinist sect".[199]

Boruch Gorin, a senior figure in the Federation of Jewish Communities of Russia, told The Jerusalem Post that rebel leaders "have allowed themselves to employ fully anti-Semitic rhetoric on previous occasions." According to Vyacheslav A. Likhachev, researcher with the Euro-Asian Jewish Congress, anti-Semitic statements are part of the "official ideology" of the "people’s republics."[200]

Religious unrest

The Donetsk People's Republic has adopted a "constitution" which states that the Russian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate is the official religion of the self declared state.[2][201] Donetsk separatists consider Christian denominations such as the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyivan Patriarchate, Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, Roman Catholics, and Protestants, as anti-Russian and see them as obstacles in the path of the separatist goal of uniting the region with Russia.[201] To complement this emphasis on Orthodoxy against churches deemed "heretical" and anti-Russian the separatists have been successful in enlisting the widespread support of many people in Donetsk belonging to the indigenous Greek Orthodox community. These are mainly Pontic Greeks settled in Donetsk and elsewhere in southern Russia and Ukraine especially since the Middle Ages, and are in the main descendents of refugees from the Pontic Alps, Eastern Anatolia, and the Crimea, dating to the Ottoman conquests of these regions in the late 1400s. There have been widespread media reports of these ethnic Greeks and those with roots in southern Ukraine now living in mainly Northern Greece fighting with Donetsk separatist forces on the justification that their war represents a struggle for Christian Orthodoxy against the forces of what they often describe as "schismatics" and "fascists".[202]

According to Bishop Jan Sobilo, in Kramatorsk a Catholic chapel was fired upon and parishioners are afraid to attend worship services.[201] Donetsk's Uniate Church priest, Father Tikhon Kulbaka, states he received two text messages with explicit threats. Also, the address of his chapel and his phone number have appeared on pro-Russian websites.[2][201] Another Catholic priest, Pawel Witek, was kidnapped for a day where he was interrogated and accused of being a "Polish sniper" sent by the Polish government.[2][201] Members of a Gospel Church were forcibly dispersed at gunpoint by Donetsk insurgents on 23 May.[2] A Protestant clergyman Sergiy Kosyak was held at the RSA building in Donetsk and interrogated, threatened, and beaten in a room marked "NKVD" for several hours by five men and one woman with clubs, batons, and whips. His injuries included a brain concussion. Kosyak stated that "religious intolerance is on the rise" and believed his religion was a motivating factor of the attack.[2][201]

Patriarch Filaret also spoke about "numerous death threats against the Kiev Patriarchate clergy and believers" in the Donetsk areas controlled by the rebels.[201] Jehovah's Witnesses have also faced widespread discrimination. By January 2015, rebel groups had taken possession of 14 Kingdom Halls in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.[203]

Metropolitan of Donetsk and Mariupol, Illarion, has refused to take sides in the conflict.[201]

Attacks on Romani people

The News of Donbass reported that members of the Donbass People's Militia engaged in assaults and robbery on the Romani (also known as Roma or gypsies) population of Sloviansk. The armed separatists beat women and children, looted homes, and carried off the stolen goods in trucks, according to eyewitnesses.[204][205]

"They drove up in several cars and they had automatic weapons and pistols. They began shooting at the windows and they shot the locks off the doors, burst inside and started beating everyone - children, the elderly, men and women," Natalia Vorokuta, a member of a Romani women's cultural outreach group, told while describing events in Sloviansk. "They had to stand with their faces to the wall while the men threatened them and yelled that they had to immediately give them everything they have: Arms, drugs, gold and money. They threw everything they looted and stole into the vans and drove off," Vorokuta said, adding that the pogrom had an 'obviously racial subtext'.[206]

On 23 April, more attacks on Romani were reported in Sloviansk, including a man shot in the leg.[207]

The militants claimed they were acting on orders from 'People's Mayor' and militant leader Vyacheslav Ponomaryov.[204][208] Reports of the attacks were confirmed by Prime Minister Yatsenyuk, as well as a heightened level of xenophobic rhetoric at separatist rallies.[209] Ponomarev confirmed the attacks and said that they were only against Romani he alleged were involved in drug trafficking, and that he was 'cleaning the city from drugs.'[210]

The European Roma Rights Center reported that on 29 April in Slovyansk, a Romani man was shot while trying to defend his home and remains in a serious condition.[205]

In Sloviansk, Romani have since fled en masse to live with relatives in other parts of the country, fearing ethnic cleansing, displacement and murder. Some men who have decided to remain are forming militia groups to protect their families and homes.[206]

On 9 May, the [205]

Ukrainian Prime Minister Yatsenyuk said that his government would not tolerate incitement of ethnic hatred and would take all legal measures to prevent the import into Ukraine of anti-Semitism and xenophobia. He instructed law enforcement agencies to identify those distributing hateful material and bring them to justice, as well as those involved in the attacks on Romani.[204][209]

LGBT community

On 10 June, it was reported that armed militants from the Donetsk Republic attacked a gay club in the capital of Donetsk, injuring several. Witnesses said 20 people forced their way into the club, stealing jewelry and other valuables; the assailants fired shots in the club, and several people were hurt.[211]

The constitution of Donetsk People's Republic refers to homosexuality as a "perverted" union and declares that these "perverted" unions are not allowed in DPR and should be punished: "Article 31.3. Any forms of perverted unions between people of the same sex are not acknowledged and will be prosecuted."[212][213]

Late July 2015 a DPR Ministry of Information spokeswoman stated "there are no gays in Donetsk, as they all went to Kiev".[214]

Prejudice against Ukrainian speakers

On 18 April, Vyacheslav Ponomarev asked local residents of Sloviansk to report all suspicious persons, especially if they are speaking in Ukrainian language. He also promised that the local media will publish a phone number for reporting.[215]

An 18 November 2014 United Nations report on eastern Ukraine stated that the Donetsk People's Republic violated the rights of Ukrainian-speaking children because schools in rebel-controlled areas only teach in Russian.[172]


The Amnesty International, said that pro-government volunteer paramilitary battalions, such as the Aidar Battalion, Donbas Battalion, Azov Battalion often acted like "renegade gangs", and were implicated in torture, abductions, and summary executions.[178][217] Amnesty International and the (OHCHR) also raised similar concerns about Radical Party leader and Ukrainian MP Oleh Lyashko and his militia.[218]

Donetsk has also observed significant rise in violent crime (homicide, rape, including underage victims) under the control of separatist forces.[219] In July 2015 local authorities of Druzhkovka, previously occupied by separatist forces, exposed a previous torture site in one of the town's cellars.[220]

In addition to Ukrainian prisoners of war there are reports of "thousands" of prisoners who were arrested as part of internal fighting between various militant groups inside DPR.[221]


By the start of the 2015-2016 school-year DNR's authorities had overhauled the curriculum.[222] Ukrainian language lessons were decreased from around eight hours a week to two hours; while the time devoted to Russian language and literature lessons were increased.[222] The history classes were changed to give greater emphasis to the history of Donbass.[222] The grading system was changed from (Ukraine’s) 12-point scheme to the five-point grading system that is also used in Russia.[222] According to the director of a College in Donetsk "“We give students the choice between the two but the Russian one is taken into greater account".[222] School leavers will receive a Russian certificate, allowing them to enter both local universities and institutions in Russia.[222]



Pro-Russian separatists demonstrating during the Great Patriotic War Victory Day celebrations in Donetsk on 9 May 2014.
  • Donetsk City Council (and nine district councils of the city) distanced itself from the RSA occupiers and they stated (on 7 April): "The Donetsk city council and district councils continue working in the legal field. We see ensuring the vital functions of the city as our main task".[71]
  • The Independent Trade Union of Miners in Donetsk announced it would not support the pro-Russian separatist movement.[223]
  • Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko pledged revenge against pro-Russian separatists after 19 Ukrainian soldiers were killed in a rocket attack. "Militants will pay hundreds of their lives for each life of our servicemen. Not a single terrorist will avoid responsibility," he said.[224]
  •  Republic of Crimea - Crimean Deputy Prime Minister Rustam Temirgaliyev expressed the hope that the Donetsk Republic (as well as other south-eastern Ukrainian regions) would form a 'Ukrainian Federation' and join the Union State.[225]
  • Seven village councils, as well as the districts of Dobropillia Raion and Krasnoarmiisk Raion in Donetsk Oblast requested to secede to join Dnipropetrovsk Oblast. The councils intend to hold a referendum.[226] Dnipropetrovsk governor Ihor Kolomoisky announced that local referendums would take place to allow for his province to administer and provide service to cities in Donetsk and Luhansk which wish to secede.[227] A vote on joining Dnipropetrovsk is scheduled for 11 May to coincide with the secessionist referendum.[228]
  • A report by the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) released on 28 July said that based on "conservative estimates", at least 1,129 civilians had been killed since mid-April during the fighting, and nearly 3,500 had been wounded.[229] The New York Times reported that the high rate of civilian deaths had "left the population in eastern Ukraine embittered toward Ukraine's pro-Western government", and that this sentiment helped to "spur recruitment" for the insurgents.[230]
  • Armed conflict with DNR and LNR rebel forces has severely damaged the economy of Ukraine, as Kiev increased defense spending, and the economic output dropped by 6.5% in 2014 due to the rebel group control of Donbas, the main industrial region of Ukraine. Growing dependence on external debt and rampant inflation have caused the national currency, hryvnia, to fall to 26 to the US dollar from 8 a year ago. As a result, the average salary in Ukraine, currently 4012 UAH, is now equivalent to 154 US dollars.[231][232][233]


  •  Canada - Prime Minister Harper said that the events are "strictly the work of Russian provocateurs sent by the Putin regime." Canadian foreign affairs minister Baird described events in Ukraine as "brazen and co-ordinated actions" by Russia. He said: "I don't know who the Russian Federation thinks it's kidding when it tries to pretend that it has nothing to do with them," and that there are "very clear and disconcerting parallels" between the developments in eastern Ukraine and those that took place before moved to annex Crimea." He said to reporters "there's no doubt, for a good number of weeks, provocateurs and frankly thugs have been crossing the border" into Ukraine.[234]
  •  Russian Federation – On 7 April, Russia's foreign ministry said that Ukrainian authorities keep blaming the Russian government for all its troubles and stated that "Ukrainians want to get a clear answer from Kiev to all their questions. It's time to listen to these legal claims".[69][235] It also stated it was "carefully observing" events in the east and south of Ukraine, and again called for "real constitutional reform" that would turn Ukraine into a federation.[236] In an 7 April opinion piece in The Guardian Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov wrote that it was the west, and not Russia, that was guilty of destabilising Ukraine and that "Russia is doing all it can to promote early stabilisation in Ukraine".[236][237] The Russian Foreign Ministry issued a stern statement condemning the "criminal order" by Kiev for armed aggression against Donetsk, "The Kiev authorities, who self-proclaimed themselves as a result of a coup, have embarked on the violent military suppression of the protests,", demanding that "the Maidan henchmen, who overthrew the legitimate president, immediately stop the war against their own people, fulfill all the obligations under the Agreement of 21 February."[238]
  •  United Kingdom – British Foreign Secretary William Hague said there is no doubt that Moscow is behind the destabilization of eastern Ukraine. "There can't really be any real doubt that this is something that has been planned and brought about by Russia," he said, adding that Russia was deliberately "violating the independence and sovereignty of Ukraine, and that "I don't think denials of Russian involvement have a shred of credibility."[239]
  •  United StatesUS Secretary of State John Kerry said on 7 April 2014 that the events "did not appear to be spontaneous" and called on Russia to "publicly disavow the activities of separatists, saboteurs and provocateurs" in a phone call to his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov.[69] A spokeswoman for the White House National Security Council claimed that the separatists appeared to be supported by Russia. "We saw similar so-called protest activities in Crimea before Russia's purported annexation," she said in a statement, adding: "We call on President (Vladimir) Putin and his government to cease all efforts to destabilize Ukraine, and we caution against further military intervention."[240] US-Ukraine ambassador Geoffrey R. Pyatt characterized the pro-Russian militants as terrorists.[241]

Political experts

  • Ukrainian-American Alexander J. Motyl, professor of political science at Rutgers University argues that Russia's direct and indirect involvement in the violence in eastern Ukraine qualifies as a state-sponsored terrorism, and that those involved qualify as "terrorist groups."[242] Motyl also said in an interview with Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty on 20 February 2014 that Ukraine would be "better off" without "those three problematic provinces -- the two in the Donbas — Luhansk and Donetsk — and arguably even the Crimea".[243]
  • Ethnic conflict expert Matthew Parish argues that the real cause for Russia pursuing the Donbas conflict is to destabilize Ukraine so that it cannot settle into the western sphere of influence.[244]


The Republic has not been recognized by any state, apart from [245]

See also


  1. ^ The group stated they:
    1) do not recognize the Ukrainian authorities;
    2) consider themselves the legitimate authority;
    3) "sent into retirement" of all law enforcement officials appointed by the central government and Governor Serhiy Taruta;
    4) "prescribed" in the 11 May referendum on self-determination Donetsk;
    5) require the issuance of its leader Pavel Gubarev and others are detained separatists;
    6) require Ukraine to withdrawal its troops and paramilitary forces;
    7) start the process of finding mechanisms of cooperation with the Customs Union of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia (since 2015, the Eurasian Economic Union, also including Armenia and Kyrgyzstan) and other separatist groups (in Kharkiv and Luhansk).[91]


  1. ^ a b c d
  2. ^ a b c d e f
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ a b
  7. ^ "In theory, it is possible to pay with Ukrainian hryvnias, Russian rubles, US dollars, and euros in the DPR and the LPR. However, only the two former currencies are in common use. Their exchange rate has been fixed by the governments, and is 1:2 (one hryvnia is the equivalent of two rubles). However, there is a shortage of low denomination rubles, so the Ukrainian hryvnia is still the most popular means of payment."
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^ , 1/23/2015New York Times"War is Exploding Anew in Ukraine; Rebels Vow More", Lyman, Rick and Kremer, Andrew K.
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^ a b
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  24. ^ a b c
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  64. ^ a b
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  69. ^ a b c
  70. ^
  71. ^ a b
  72. ^
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  74. ^
  75. ^
  76. ^
  77. ^
  78. ^ Digital Journal, Pro-Russian Gubarev, a symbol of east Ukraine separatism, by Germain Moyon, 9 March 2014.
  79. ^
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  81. ^
  82. ^
  83. ^ a b
  84. ^ a b
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  100. ^ a b c
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  107. ^
  108. ^
  109. ^
  110. ^ "Ukraine rebels say they are willing to talk peace with Kiev". The Christian Science Monitor. September 1, 2014.
  111. ^ Russian Rebels Seeking Total Independence from Ukraine, The New Indian Express (3 September 2014)
    Truce in Ukraine violated, but holding for now, Special Broadcasting Service (8 September 2014)
  112. ^ a b
  113. ^
  114. ^ ANALYSIS: Donetsk and Luhansk propose amendments to Ukraine’s Constitution, The Ukrainian Weekly (22 May 2015)
  115. ^
  116. ^
  117. ^
  118. ^ a b c d e f The War republics in the Donbas one year after the outbreak of the conflict, Centre for Eastern Studies (2015-06-17)
  119. ^
  120. ^
  121. ^
  122. ^ Passenger trains will continue running in DPR but less often - Kyiv officials, Interfax-Ukraine (1 December 2014)
  123. ^
  124. ^
  125. ^
  126. ^
  127. ^
  128. ^
  129. ^ a b c Date of elections in Donetsk, Luhansk People’s republics the same - Nov. 2, Russian News Agency "TASS" (October 11, 2014)
  130. ^ a b Ukraine urges Russia to stop separatist elections, USA TODAY (October 21, 2014)
  131. ^ EU not to recognize elections organized by DPR and LPR, Interfax-Ukraine (25.10.2014)
  132. ^ a b Ukraine crisis: Russia to recognise rebel vote in Donetsk and Luhansk, BBC News (28 October 2014)
  133. ^
  134. ^ a b c d Local elections in DPR to take place on October 18 – Zakharchenko, Interfax-Ukraine (2 July 2015)
    DPR, LPR attempts to hold separate elections in Donbas on Oct 18 to have destructive consequences - Poroshenko, Interfax-Ukraine (2 July 2015)
  135. ^ Poroshenko says local elections in Ukraine will be held on Oct. 25, date on which they will be held in Donbas is hard to predict, Kyiv Post (11 June 2015)
  136. ^ LPR residents will elect the heads of cities and regions on November 1, Sputnik News (6 July 2015)
  137. ^ Pro-Russian rebels in Ukraine postpone disputed elections, Reuters (6 October 2015)
    Ukraine rebels to delay elections, Washington Post (6 October 2015)
  138. ^ a b c Ukraine crisis: Pro-Russian rebels 'delay disputed elections', BBC News (6 October 2015)
    Hollande: Elections In Eastern Ukraine Likely To Be Delayed, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (2 October 2015)
    Ukraine Is Being Told to Live With Putin, Bloomberg News (5 October 2015)
  139. ^ a b (Ukrainian) Donbass postpones elections, (5 October 2015)
  140. ^
  141. ^
  142. ^
  143. ^ a b
  144. ^
  145. ^ Separatists urge Russia to annex Donetsk in wake of referendum, Financial Times (16 May 2014)
  146. ^
  147. ^
  148. ^
  149. ^
  150. ^
  151. ^ a b (Russian)\(Ukrainian) Why Savings violates the prohibition NBU to work in the area of ATO , Ukrayinska Pravda (8 September 2014)
  152. ^ [Oschadbank stops operation of departments on rebel-control territories of Donetsk and Luhansk regions Oschadbank stops operation of departments on rebel-control territories of Donetsk and Luhansk regions], Interfax-Ukraine (24 November 2014)
  153. ^ Pensioners travel outside of separatist areas to get their cash, Kyiv Post (11 December 2014)
  154. ^ a b c d e f g h East Ukraine separatists hold vote to gain legitimacy, promise normalcy, Reuters (30 October 2014)
  155. ^ Women gave militants two months to get out of Donetsk - NSDC. Ukrayinska Pravda. 25 November 2014
  156. ^
  157. ^
  158. ^ a b c d (Russian) Does it make sense to blockade Donbas?, Ukrayinska Pravda (6 June 2015)
  159. ^ a b c Ukraine Oligarch Put on Spot as Pro-Russian Rebels Nibble at His Empire, Moscow Times (Oct. 26 2014)
  160. ^ a b Donetsk Republic PM speaks in favour of economic cooperation with Russia, ITAR-TASS (October 12, 2014)
  161. ^
  162. ^ a b Russian gas for the Donbas: the games being played with Kyiv and Brussels, Centre for Eastern Studies (25 February 2015)
  163. ^
  164. ^
  165. ^ [1], Interfax-Ukraine (2 July 2015)
  166. ^ a b c Kremlin-separatist area gets its own mobile operator, Kyiv Post (5 June 2015)
    Kyivstar switches off mobile network in militant-controlled areas of Donetsk and Luhansk region, Interfax-Ukraine (5 February 2015)
  167. ^
  168. ^
  169. ^
  170. ^
  171. ^
  172. ^ a b c d Almost 1,000 dead since east Ukraine truce - UN, BBC News (21 November 2014)
    Ukraine death toll rises to more than 4,300 despite ceasefire - U.N., Reuters (21 November 2014)
  173. ^
  174. ^ Majority of human rights violations in Ukraine committed by militants - UN, Interfax-Ukraine (15 December 2014)
  175. ^ "Ukraine's Neo-Nazis Won't Get U.S. Money". Bloomberg. 12 June 2015.
  176. ^ "Ukraine crisis: the neo-Nazi brigade fighting pro-Russian separatists". The Daily Telegraph. 11 August 2014.
  177. ^ "Report on the human rights situation in Ukraine - 15 November 2014". Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
  178. ^ a b
  179. ^ a b "Human Rights Watch: Ukrainian forces are rocketing civilians". The Washington Post. 25 July 2014.
  180. ^ a b "Ukraine: Unguided Rockets Killing Civilians Stop Use of Grads in Populated Areas". Human Rights Watch. 24 July 2014.
  181. ^ a b
  182. ^
  183. ^ a b c
  184. ^ a b
  185. ^ a b
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  200. ^
  201. ^ a b c d e f g h
  202. ^ See for example, 'Sputnik News', 27 Aug 2014.
  203. ^
  204. ^ a b c
  205. ^ a b c
  206. ^ a b
  207. ^
  208. ^
  209. ^ a b
  210. ^
  211. ^
  212. ^
  213. ^
  214. ^ Gays in Donetsk face fear as Russian influence takes grip, Kyiv Post (31 July 2015)
  215. ^
  216. ^ a b
  217. ^
  218. ^
  219. ^
  220. ^
  221. ^
  222. ^ a b c d e f Rebel-held Ukraine overhauls education system as it aligns itself with Russia, The Guardian (16 August 2015)
  223. ^
  224. ^ "Ukraine president vows revenge after 19 soldiers killed in rebel rocket attack". The Washington Post. 11 July 2014.
  225. ^
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  236. ^ a b
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  244. ^
  245. ^

External links

  • Official website
  • Donetsk People's Republic on Twitter
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