Earlier this week Vladimir Putin acknowledged the mountain of criticism and economic sanctions placed on his nation after the Russian president’s decision to annex the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea.
“We ourselves will continue moving forward. We will strengthen our statehood and our country,” Putin said in Moscow’s Red Square during the anniversary of the reunification of Crimea with Russia on Wednesday. “We will overcome the difficulties that we have so easily created for ourselves over these recent times.”
During his less than 5-minute speech, Putin claims that he wanted to “help and support” fellow citizens and therefore annexed the area. Further adding to his point, he notes that he was not interested in the strategically important location of Crimea nor the additional land, saying “we have enough.”
That same day, the largest country by area in the world, which apparently has “enough” land also signed a treaty with Georgia’s rebel South Ossetia that almost completley integrates it with Russia.
Moscow maintains that it will “do what is in its national interests” amid sanctions from the West.
Here is a video of Putin’s speech:
Here is the speech text translated:
Dear Friends! Exactly one year ago in Russia these days, which we are now so many say, the Russian people have shown an amazing collection, amazing patriotism and support of the Crimean Sevastopol return to his native shores.
We were all together head and heart to understand and feel how important for us to link generations and times, as did much of our heroic ancestors for our country. We realised that in regard to the Crimea it is not just about some areas, even strategically important.
We are talking about millions of Russian people, millions of our fellow citizens who need our help and support. We understand how important it is for all of us. We realised that this is not just about the area, which we have enough.
We are talking about the historical origins of the sources of our spirituality and statehood. It is about what makes us one people and a single cohesive nation.
Dear friends! We have always believed in Russia that Russian and Ukrainian – are one people. I think so now. Of course, extreme nationalism is always harmful and dangerous. I am sure that the Ukrainian people still give a decent and objective assessment of the activities of those who brought the country to the point where it is today.
For our part we will do everything in our power to ensure that Ukraine was held this difficult period in its development as quickly as possible, and all in order to restore normal interstate relations.
And we ourselves, we ourselves will go forward, we will strengthen our statehood, strengthen our country. We will overcome the difficulties that have so easy to create for themselves during the last time.
And of course, we will overcome and overcome all the problems and difficulties that we are trying to throw outside. It is generally useless in regard to Russia.
Thank you for your support! Long live Russia!
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