Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard
In an interview to the agency RBC Ukraine, the Minister for the Temporarily Occupied Territories and Internally Displaced Persons Tuka recognized that there are no Russian troops on the territory of Donbass.
According to Tuka, the International Court of Justice in its decisions doesn’t use such household terms to which we have all got used to.
“… the phrases “everybody knows this” or “it is well known by everybody” aren’t taken into account there. When we say that there, (in Donbass) there are 5,000-10,000 regular Russian troops, where is the proof? Weapons – yes. But troops? The Main intelligence Directorate members (Russian military personnel of Main Intelligence Directorate of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation Evgeny Erofeev and Aleksandr Aleksandrov – convicted in 2016 in Ukraine) who we exchanged – yes. But they, so it turned out, were formally dismissed. Although, apparently, all of us know all of this. But, from the point of view of formality, in court this is not proof. Therefore incontestable proof should be collected bit by bit,” said Tuka.
To the direct question of the journalist of the agency formally are there Russian troops “in the east of Ukraine”, Tuka answered negatively.
“As of now we haven’t proven it in judicial proceedings,” specified the official.
As a reminder, speculation about the presence of Russian troops is Donbass is one of the main subjects of rhetoric of the Ukrainian power. At the end of January the adviser to Avakov Kiva on the air of TV channel “112 Ukraine” stated that “Russian troops gradually retreat from Donbass to the territory of the Russian Federation”. At the same time at the end of December the Chief of the General Staff of the UAF Muzhenko stated that the threat of the notorious “Russian aggression” for Ukraine is possible not only from the East, and also from the West, the South, and the North.
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