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Published in Stream:
Ukraine Live Day 669
Press by
The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Peskov Says Putin Referred Only To Volunteer Fighters In Ukraine
4 years
European Commission Says Ukraine Has Met Requirements For Visa-Free Regime

Interfax reports that Dmitry Peskov, President Vladimir Putin's press secretary, has told journalists that Putin did not mean to say yesterday, in remarks that were jumped upon by the press, that Russia had sent soldiers to Ukraine.

Peskov said that news reports that claimed that Putin had admitted to deploying Russian armed forces in Ukraine were "absolutely incorrect." 

The Interpreter translates:

"They have interpreted this incorrectly," said Peskov.

He stressed that volunteers were being discussed, not Russian military specialists.

"There was a war there. People went there to fight. They shot, they participated in combat. This is the military sphere," said the president's press secretary.

He recommended they once again read Vladimir Putin's comments, in which he "repeatedly spoke of our fellow citizens, citizens of Russia, of citizens of other CIS states, who had gone of their own accord (to Ukraine - Interfax)."

"Someone who doesn't have a fixed sphere of employment, someone using their vacation, someone who takes unpaid leave. These people people are real and they head there. It is these people, who in their free time expressed solidarity with the Donbass, who considered it impossible to lie down while the armed forces of Ukraine began to destroy settlements in southeastern Ukraine," said Peskov, referring to the conflict in southeastern Ukraine.

Of course Peskov is lying when he says that Russia did not send regular forces into Ukraine, as has been well documented. But President Putin's remarks yesterday were carefully vague and, as we discussed on this blog, did not amount to an admission akin to that seen late last year, when he finally stated publicly that Russian special forces had participated in the takeover of Crimea.

-- Pierre Vaux