Yeltsin’s Administration Rejected the Request of Donetsk, Lugansk, & Crimea to Join Russia as the USSR Was Collapsing

A member of Yeltsin’s team spoke about how in the 1990s Crimea, Donetsk, and Lugansk were denied entry into Russia. The head of the Yeltsin presidential administration Sergey Filatov confirmed that delegations from Donetsk, Lugansk, and Crimea in 1991 asked to recognise them as a part of Russia, but Moscow “had no time to negotiate with Kiev”. In an interview with the publication “Vzglyad” he noted that nationalism was developing strongly in Ukraine at the time.

“Of course, they were originally our land, it’s just that they were given to Kiev. They understood that they were on unequal terms with Ukrainians, and nationalism had developed very much in Ukraine. The war is still going on over these regions, and not only these. Now they are saying that we will take other regions to Russia as well,” said Filatov.

According to him, Yeltsin abandoned this idea because he thought “how would Russia survive in general?” and there was no time for negotiations.

“Before the start of Gaidar’s reforms, bread was absent in many regions. For a few days there was flour, and there were $120 billion of debt left of the USSR. What was there to think about – about Ukraine at that moment or, after all, about itself, about its own people?,” said Filatov.

In addition, according to him, when the issue of the transfer of nuclear weapons to Russia as the successor of the USSR arose, the former Soviet general, who became the “defence minister” of Ukraine, Konstantin Morozov opposed it. This problem was also considered to be a priority.

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