Russia’s Illegal Annexation of Ukrainian Territory: Experts Respond
On Friday, September 30, 2022, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed four accession treaties declaring that the Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson, and Zaporizhzhia regions of Ukraine are now a part of Russia. This move, which forcibly claims 15% of Ukraine’s territory, follows a series of sham referenda wherein citizens were forced to vote (yes) on the question of whether they wanted to join Russia. HURI joins the international community in absolute condemnation of this action, which violates international norms and escalates the months-long brutal, unprovoked war.
During the accession ceremony, Putin delivered a speech imbued with vitriol against the West, indicating that he will protect Russia’s territorial claims even if he must use nuclear weapons to do so. In response, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has officially submitted Ukraine’s application to join NATO and asserted that there will be no peace talks with Russia so long as Putin is in power. Read more