Head of the Donetsk People’s Republic Denis Pushilin told the UA REGNUM edition about the Minsk Agreements’ practical implementation by Ukrainian armed formations and the assistance provided to Donbass by the Russian patriotic intellectuals, the press service of the Head of State’s Office reports.

“The situation in the Republic remains stably tense. This is primarily due to the daily shelling carried out by the armed formations of Ukraine.

According to the reports of the DPR Representative Office to the Joint Center for Control and Coordination and the negotiation process, only over the past day the total number of violations by the AFU amounted to 5 times. Gorlovka (the 6/7 mine’s village), Dolomitnoye, Donetsk (the Volvo Center) and Sakhanka came under the fire launched by the AFU.

The total number of munitions fired by the AFU made 41 pieces. On the previous day, the amount of ammunition engaged onto the DPR territory totalled 16 pieces.

In addition to that, a power line was damaged in Gorlovka as a result of the AFU shelling. Thus, on February 9, the AFU engaged mortars on the 6/7 mine’s village in Gorlovka from the direction of Shumy locality. As a result of the shelling, there was damaged a power line and the village was completely de-energized. The enemy fired 21 shells of 82mm calibre and 20 AGS grenades.

When Poroshenko, we did not expect anything good. Under Zelensky, things got worse. We don’t see any hints of peace initiatives, except for loud statements in the media. In fact, they shoot more at the contact line than during the last period under Poroshenko.

The position of Ukraine’s representatives to the negotiation process is still destructive. There is no sign of either a compromise or willingness to find common ground in order to move further,” Denis Pushilin said.

The Head of State also commented on the issue of Polish anti-Semitism and the treatment of national minorities in the Republic.

“Casting doubt on historical facts for political reasons has implications. Our memory, pride, the feat of our grandfathers and great-grandfathers — Soviet soldiers — are being devalued in favour of the geopolitical conjuncture. Moreover, ideological adversaries are deliberately doing this shortly before the 75th anniversary of the Great Victory, seeking to make the strike more painful.

The actions of enemy propagandists clearly illustrate examples of cynical and arrogant distortion of history.

It is a good thing that the world community is getting to understand this. This is evidenced even by the fact that the Polish and Ukrainian presidents were denied the opportunity to speak at a commemorative event in Israel.

Poland, like Ukraine, is engaged in myth-making, adapting history to a political position. They rewrite history to whitewash themselves.

But the figures show something completely different. By the beginning of World War II, 3.3 million Jews lived in Poland. By the time of its completion, only 380 thousand people had survived, and 70% of them were those who fled the country in the early days of the occupation.

As for the life of national minorities in the territory of the Donetsk People’s Republic, I can say with confidence that we support the development of all ethnic communities, we have always lived together in friendship and people of more than 100 nationalities live here now. We respect the rights of every citizen of the Republic, regardless of nationality or religion,” the Head of the DPR said.

When asked about the assistance provided to Donbass by the Russian patriotic intellectuals, Denis Pushilin answered that, being in the conditions of the state of war, unrecognition and economic blockade, any support is of utmost importance for the Republic.

“We highly appreciate the interest taken by the Russian patriotic intellectuals in the problems faced by Donbass, as well as their assistance and support.

Last year, I met twice with her representatives in Moscow. We discussed a variety of topics, raised sensitive issues, and considered options for resolving them. Such dialogues are beneficial to all participants. For us, this is, first and foremost, an opportunity to tell the truth about the life in the Republic, address any urgent questions, and explain the reasons for making certain decisions.

At the moment, the most important issue for us is the economic recovery. Donbass has always been associated with labour achievements, and to develop we need, in the first place, to restore a strong industrial base.

We are bending great efforts to gradually improve the standard of our citizens’ living, in particular, we increase pensions and salaries of budgetary institutions’ employees, but so far it has not been possible to achieve the desired level. Unfortunately, in the conditions of our unrecognized status, many of our enterprises experience significant difficulties in such areas as the purchase of raw materials necessary for the production, as well as the marketing of their products.

To improve the performance of our industry, representatives of DPR enterprises and senior officials are trying to establish contacts with potential counterparties both in Russia and in other countries.

Therefore, we have a strong interest in establishing contacts with entrepreneurs and industrialists from Russia, with those people who will be ready to cooperate with enterprises of the Republic, and possibly invest in the DPR industry. It is this kind of assistance that is urgently needed for the Republic,” Denis Pushilin said.

Answering the question whether Donbass residents are willing to return to Ukraine, the Head of the Donetsk People’s Republic noted that the abyss between us only gets deeper every day.

“Our citizens made their choice back at the referendum in 2014. Since then, the Kiev authorities have continued to push residents of the Republics away by their actions. The ongoing shelling, the death of children, elderly people, women, the destruction of infrastructure, the transport and economic blockade… There is still much more to put on the list the troubles the Ukrainian authorities have brought the long-suffering Donbass land into. How can one forgive this?” Denis Pushilin said.