On March 16, Russian President Vladimir Putin held a meeting devoted to measures of socio-economic support for Russia’s constituent entities.
“We are meeting at a difficult time when our Armed Forces are conducting the special military operation in Ukraine and Donbas.
At the very beginning, in the early morning of February 24, I publicly named the reasons and goals of the actions of the Russian Federation: to help people in the Donbas, who have been subjected to real genocide through most barbaric methods — blockades, terrorist attacks, shelling. For no reason.
Only for their efforts to strive for elementary human rights: to speak their native language, to raise their people the way they want,” Putin said during the meeting.
At the very beginning of Operation Z, the Kiev authorities, through various channels, were asked not to engage in battles, but to withdraw troops from the Donbass in order to avoid bloodshed. They did not want to, Putin said.