Russia’s president Vladimir Putin has asked parliament to revoke his right to intervene militarily in Ukraine.
The move is being seen as a step towards achieving peace in eastern Ukraine, where hundreds of people have been killed in fighting.
Moscow denies accusations that its troops are helping separatists in Donetsk and Luhansk regions, to make it clear that Ukraine is to blame for the instability.
“All Ukrainian leaders, former and current, are responsible for the current events taking place in the country. It is also the responsibility of those who started events in Kyiv and encouraged the ‘coup d’etat’,” Russian Prime Minister Medvedev said.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko welcomed Putin’s decision as a “first practical step” towards settling the crisis, but said Moscow must also support Kyiv’s peace plan.
The Russian parliament originally authorised Putin to use force in its neighbouring country if needed in March. In the same month, Moscow annexed Ukraine’s Crimea peninsula. Putin later admitted that troops without insignia on the ground were Russian armed forces.
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