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Moscow Turns Over Control of Donbas Economy to New Supervisor from Kyiv

Supervisors of key enterprises in the Russian-occupied territories of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions are being replaced. In particular, the Kremlin has turned over control of coal mining to a company linked to Ukrainian opposition MP Viktor Medvedchuk, known as a politician who does not recognise Russian aggression against Ukraine and has close personal relations with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Authors of the Luhansk Operative Telegram channel reported on the corresponding changes in the non-government controlled territories of Donbas. Activists of the Eastern Human Rights Group also confirmed this information, citing their own sources.

“The VTS [complex provision of foreign trade operations] company is no longer engaged in coal mining in the occupied Donbas. It was replaced by the Trading House. Don Coals company that is supervised by the opposition MP of Ukraine. In other words, the Kremlin is transferring the economy of the occupied Donbas,” the human rights activists said on their Facebook page.

The activists do not directly mention the MP’s name, but various media outlets write about Medvedchuk.

In particular, on 21 January, the Don Press online media portal, citing a Luhansk blogger, noted that the coal industry of the occupied Donbas is coming under the control of Medvedchuk and Deputy Minister of Economic Development of Russia Sergei Nazarov. The report emphasises that for this purpose, the Trading House, Don Coals enterprise was created.

The news agency also published a copy of the letter, according to which from 1 February this year, the said company will be the only trade “representative office” for the sale of coal from Donbas in the territory of the Russian Federation. The heads of enterprises are invited to submit applications for the formation of procurement volumes for February.

In fact, it is about the “capture” of the coal market of all occupied territories.

As a reminder, journalists have recently published a post according to which Darnytska CHPP buys coal not only from Russia, but also, probably, from the occupied territories of Donbas. Dozens of Russian Railways cars with coal were spotted at the Darnytsia station in Kyiv.

Bohdan Marusyak

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