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 With Donbas blockade, Kyiv undermines national unity, - DW Ukrainian desk head Johann

The Poroshenko administration's blockade of occupied Donbas could lead to the demise of Ukraine's east.

Head of DW Ukrainian desk Bernd Johann wrote in his opinion article for Deutsche Welle, Censor.NET reports.

"Politically speaking, all sides - the leadership in Kyiv, as well as the separatists and their supporters in the Kremlin - are pouring fresh fuel on the fire. They are cementing the division of Ukraine step by step. And now it is Kyiv itself that has moved to speed up this process: The Security Council of Ukraine has decided to stop all freight traffic with the rebel-occupied areas in Luhansk and Donetsk," Johann wrote.

Read more: Ukarine's PM again slams Donbas blockade: "This subversive action against Ukraine has a name and a face"

The journalist believes that interruption of financial connections between Kyiv and the separatist-held parts of the Donbas has long been done with devastating consequences for the people, especially the elderly.

"They must take the dangerous route across the dividing line to retrieve their pensions or other social benefits from Kyiv. With the economic blockade that has now been decided, Kyiv is also cutting back on shipments of all kinds of goods to Donbas," he reminds.

"The Ukrainian plans for a reintegration could become so much wasted paper with such action. Politicians in eastern Ukraine - along with many in Kyiv - have long pointed out that Ukraine is doing too little to win back the people of Donbas. Now those goalposts seem to be moving further and further away.

Read more: Paris concerned about NSDC decision to suspend trade with Donbas, - French Foreign Ministry

"With this decision, Kyiv is essentially also making fools out of countries that are working to resolve the Donbas conflict. These include Germany and France, which have always stood for the unity of Ukraine within the framework of the Minsk process - which is why they are opposed to any measure that could lead to a worsening of the conflict. The imposition of an economic blockade is precisely such a step. The German government's reaction to the blockade imposed by Kyiv and the illegal seizure of factories by the separatists is correspondingly sharp.

"Only Russia, which after the annexation of Crimea launched the conflict in eastern Ukraine as well, will probably be pleased with Kyiv's moves, which provide it with a welcome opportunity. Only recently, the Kremlin began to recognize passports issued by the separatists in eastern Ukraine as valid travel documents. This recognition accelerates the process of division. The economic blockade in Ukraine is now pushing Donbas further into the arms of Moscow and advancing the division of Ukraine," Johann sums up.

On March 15, the NSDC ruled to stop freight transportation across the contact line in the Donbas. The decision was put into effect by President Poroshenko on the same day.


 
 
 
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