On Monday 21 February 2022, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed the Executive Order on the Recognition of the Donetsk People’s Republic and the Executive Order on the Recognition of the Lugansk People’s Republic.

The two breakaway regions, located on the eastern side of crisis-ridden Ukraine, broke away from control of the Ukrainian Government in 2014 by proclaiming themselves independent.

Their independence has, until now, not been recognised.

Since the proclamations of independence by the Donbas- as the two breakaway regions are collectively known- about 15 000 people have perished in fighting.

Putin and Head of the DPR Denis Pushilin signed a Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance between the Russian Federation and the Donetsk People’s Republic.

The President of Russia and Head of the LPR Leonid Pasechnik signed a Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Mutual Assistance between the Russian Federation and the Lugansk People’s Republic.

Following the signing ceremony, Vladimir Putin had a conversation with Denis Pushilin and Leonid Pasechnik.

Here are the pictures of the signing ceremony: