What Happened: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has signed a decree to facilitate the process of obtaining Ukrainian citizenship for Russian nationals who have faced persecution for their political beliefs in Russia, the Kyiv Post reported Aug. 13. The decree remains subject to approval by the Ukrainian Parliament, which has two months to pass the law.
Why It Matters: Although Zelenskiy campaigned on improving ties with Russia, recent decisions by Kiev and Moscow related to citizenship will likely undermine efforts to end the conflict in Eastern Ukraine.
Background: Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on April 24 to make it easier for residents of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions in Eastern Ukraine to obtain Russian passports and citizenship.
- Ukraine: Elections Could Raise Tensions With Russia (July 19, 2019)
- Ukraine: The New President's Mandate for Change Faces a Stiff Resistance (April 22, 2019)
- The WTO Protects Its Power in a Landmark National Security Case (April 5, 2019)