Eastern Europe

Ukraine Enforces New Laws To De-Russify Public Areas


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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has approved 2 new laws that are designed to remove remnants of Ukraine’s Russian culture and will rename places across the country that carry Russian influence. Local authorities will also be required to “free public space from the symbols of the Russian world.”

The new laws will also prohibit names that “perpetuate, promote, or symbolize the occupying state or its notable, memorable, historical and cultural places, cities, dates, events” and “its figures who carried out military aggression against Ukraine.”

Zelensky signed the laws on Friday and they are set to take effect in 30 days, according to Zerohedge. Once the laws are in effect, local authorities will have 6 months to remove Russian culture from all public places. A board is set to be established to determine which names must be removed.

Kyiv first began waging war against Russian culture in Ukraine in 2014 after a coup overthrew Viktor Yanukovych. New language laws were passed that were intended to marginalize the Russian language.

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At the time the language law was passed, Zelenksy was a comedian and had one of his movies, Love in the Big City 2, censored as it had been made in Russian. It is estimated that a fifth of Ukrainians identify as ethnic Russians.

Since the invasion of Ukraine last year, Zelensky has expanded the process called “de-Russification.” Kyiv has since gone on to nationalize the media, target branches of the Orthodox chur it has accused of having connections with Moscow, banned political opposition to Zelensky, and removed monuments that represent historical Russian influence in Ukraine.

With the new laws in place, it appears to be only a matter of time until there are little if any, reminders of Russian influence or culture in Ukraine.

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