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Russian President Putin Declares Martial Law In The 4 Annexed Ukrainian Regions

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Russian President Vladimir Putin has declared martial law in the four Ukrainian regions that were illegally annexed. With the move, Russia is attempting to hold the ground even tighter in the face of Ukrainian advances. 

The Russian President also announced increased authority for local governors in Russia to implement wartime measures that would give way to further restrictions. This would let Putin take more control at home. 

Martial law was announced through a presidential decree in the Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions; the annexation of these Ukrainian territories was disapproved by the international community last month. Russia has seen several setbacks on the battlefield in recent weeks, and its allies in the southern Kherson region have started moving inhabitants in what appears to be preparation for a significant struggle for the provincial capital.

Putin strengthens war efforts under martial law

While proclaiming his decree, Putin said, “I signed a decree on the introduction of martial law in these four constituent entities of the Russian Federation.” Putin while chairing a Security Council meeting via a video link, enhanced the security powers of entire Russia’s local governors and commanded the making of a special coordinating council under Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin to elevate the lowering war effort. 

“The “Entire system of state administration”, not only the specialized security agencies, must be geared to supporting what Russia calls its “special military operation”. In addition, in the current situation, I consider it necessary to give additional powers to the leaders of all Russian regions”, he said. 

At the same time, Russia has been asking residents living in the region west of the Dnipro River to vacate before a possible counteroffensive by Ukraine. Before his speech, Russian media showed civilians waiting to board ferries at a river port to evacuate.The move is the latest in Putin’s replies to continuous defeats by Ukrainian forces since early September. However, Ukraine is not deterred by such moves, rejecting them as nothing. 

The Federation Council, the upper house of Parliament, approved the decree immediately. In late September, the Russian army annexed most of the Luhansk and Kherson regions and about half of the Zaporizhzhia and Donetsk regions. Martial law in these regions would provide authority for curfews to be imposed, property taken, undocumented immigrants to be jailed, checkpoints to be put up, persons to be detained for up to 30 days, and residents to be forcibly relocated to another area.

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