Even today, we are facing the consequences of developments of 1991. People in Kiev are dying and will be dying further due to the fault of those, who made the decision to destroy the country in the Kremlin many years ago.
— Mikhail Degtyaryov, Russian Federation State Duma Deputy, Liberal Democratic Party of Russia faction
It was impossible to imagine that Ukraine and Russia could not be together. That they could be in separate states. But that is what happened. What seemed impossible, unfortunately occurred. The USSR broke up.
Some Western politicians are already trying to frighten us not only with sanctions but with the prospect of worsening internal problems. I would like to know what they mean by this: the actions of some kind of fifth column, various types of national traitors or do they expect that they can worsen Russia’s socio-economic situation and thereby trigger people’s discontent. We regard such statements as irresponsible and obviously aggressive and will respond appropriately.
— Vladimir Putin, Russian Federation President, on occasion of signing treaty to annex Crimea, March 18, 2014
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March 1991 referendum on preservation of Soviet Union as “renewed federation”