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Ukraine applies for NATO membership as Putin annexes 4 regions

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Kabul: Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has said his country is submitting an “accelerated” application to join the NATO military alliance, after Russian leader Vladimir Putin proclaimed the annexation of four partially occupied Ukrainian regions.

He also said that as long as Vladimir Putin is the president of Russia, Ukraine will not negotiate with Moscow.

Meanwhile Dmitry Medvedev, deputy head of Russia’s National Security Council, has warned that Ukraine’s request to join NATO will accelerate the start of World War III.

This action takes place after Vladimir Putin officially signed the annexation document of 4 regions from Ukraine to Russia on Friday evening.

At the signing ceremony of the annexation documents of the new regions to Russia, he said: People have made their choice, Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhia have a common destiny with Russia, and the people of these regions will become Russian citizens forever.

According to Russia Today news agency, the referendum on the annexation of these regions to Russia began on Friday, September 23, and continued until September 27.

According to this report, the regions of Luhansk, Donetsk, Kherson and Zaporizhia make up about 15% of the land of Ukraine.

On Thursday morning (September 29), the Russian media published the results of referendums in the regions of Luhansk, Donetsk, Kherson and Zaporizhia, and announced that in all these regions more than 95% of people want to join Russia and separate from Ukraine.

Analysts believe that with the annexation of these regions to Russia, developments in Eastern Europe can enter a new phase. From now on, Moscow will consider any attack on the four mentioned areas as a military action against Russia and may react harshly.

Previously, in 2014, the Crimean peninsula was separated from Ukraine and annexed to Russia, which is not recognized by the United Nations.

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