Putin Declares Martial Law in Annexed Regions of Ukraine
The U.S State Department slammed the move as “desperate.”
Weeks after Russian President Vladimir Putin announced the annexation of four regions in Ukraine, Putin has declared martial law in Donetsk, Kherson, Luhansk, and Zaporizhzhia, the Associated Press reported Wednesday.
It’s not clear at first exactly what the declaration means, but it could mean anything from restrictions on public gatherings to media censorship to travel bans, the AP story said.
“We are working to solve very difficult large-scale tasks to ensure Russia’s security and safe future, to protect our people,” Putin said in remarks reported by the AP. “Those who are on the frontlines or undergoing training at firing ranges and training centers should feel our support and know that they have our big, great country and unified people behind their back.”
“In this regard, let me remind you that in the Donetsk People’s Republic, the Luhansk People’s Republic, as well as in the Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions, martial law was in effect before joining Russia,” the Russian president added, per CNN. “Therefore, I signed a decree on the introduction of martial law in these four subjects of the Russian Federation so that it will be immediately sent to the Federation Council.”
CNN reported that the annexation was contrary to international law and that it comes as Ukraine is carrying out an offensive.
The order itself, via Google Translate, states “Decree on the introduction of martial law in the territories of the DPR, LPR, Zaporozhye and Kherson regions: The head of the Russian state signed the Decree "On the introduction of martial law in the territories of the Donetsk People's Republic, Luhansk People's Republic, Zaporozhye, and Kherson regions.”
The U.S State Department slammed the martial law move as “desperate.”
“It should be no surprise to anybody that Russia is resorting to desperate tactics to try and enforce control in these areas," State Department deputy spokesperson Vedant Patel said in a press briefing Thursday, per Reuters.
That statement came the day after the State had announced sanctions on Russia’s technology procurement.
“In coordination with the U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Department of the Treasury designated Russian procurement agent Yury Yuryevich Orekhov (Orekhov) and his companies Nord-Deutsche Industrieanlagenbau GmbH (NDA GmbH) and Opus Energy Trading LLC (Opus Energy Trading) pursuant to Executive Order 14024,” the State Department said.
“Orekhov, via NDA GmbH, is responsible for procuring U.S.-origin technologies for Russian end-users, including entities on the U.S. Department of Commerce Bureau of Industry and Security’s Entity List, in violation of U.S. export controls. These technologies include advanced semiconductors and microprocessors used in fighter aircraft, ballistic and hypersonic missile systems, smart munitions, radar, satellites, and other military applications, components of which have been found in Russian weapons platforms in Ukraine. As such, Orekhov and his companies have directly contributed to the Kremlin’s unjustified war of aggression against Ukraine.”
Stephen Silver, a technology writer for The National Interest, is a journalist, essayist and film critic, who is also a contributor to The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philly Voice, Philadelphia Weekly, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Living Life Fearless, Backstage magazine, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenSilver.