Russia is fighting for its very existence – Putin

“For our Western so-called ‘partners’ – for, actually, our adversaries, we can say that openly today – the matter is about improving their geopolitical stance,” Putin stated, adding that the situation is very different for Moscow.

For us, this is not a struggle for some geopolitical stance, but a struggle for the very existence of Russian statehood.

Destabilization and “tearing apart” Russia have long been among the top goals of the country’s adversaries, Putin said, urging everyone to show unity amid the ongoing hardships.

“In order to bring peace and stability closer, we, of course, need to show the consolidation of our society, composure. When the enemy sees that our society is strong, internally sound, consolidated, then, without any doubt, what we are striving for will happen: both success and victory,” Putin declared. Protecting Russians living in Ukraine from persecution by the Kiev regime remains among the top goals of Moscow, Putin reiterated, adding that he has repeatedly met people from Donbass who “are exactly the same as us.” Following the collapse of the Soviet Union, Moscow tried to build up solid and mutually beneficial ties with Kiev, but the efforts ultimately flopped, the president admitted. “Russia has been patiently trying for decades to mend relations with the modern Ukrainian state, but the situation changed in 2014, when a Western-prompted coup d’etat took place,” he said. Even after that, Moscow spent years trying to peacefully resolve the civil conflict in then-Ukrainian Donbass, he concluded.

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