Donetsk, Jan 18 - DAN. The law on Donbass ‘reintegration’ adopted by the Ukrainian parliament pushes the region farther away from Ukraine, DPR envoy to Minsk talks, parliament speaker Denis Pushilin said on Thursday.

“This law (on Donbass ‘reintegration’ - eds Donetsk News Agency) pushes Donbass farther away from Ukraine; it’s not reintegration, it’s anti-integration,” Pushilin said in comments received by Donetsk News Agency.

The speaker said the adoption of the legislation was a new demonstration of Kiev’s consistent and destructive policy towards both Donbass residents and Ukrainians. The bill’s reference to Russia as ‘aggressor country’ gives a new angle on Donbass events and can have far-reaching consequences, Pushilin said.

“Ukrainian-Russian trade increased last year and no sober-minded person can attribute it to the announcement that Russia is ‘Donbass occupant,’ he said. “Ukraine’s inadequacy extends from the media space which is used to fakes to the legal fold.”

Earlier on Thursday, DPR head Alexander Zakharchenko said the Donbass reintegration bill would enable Kiev to step up military confrontation with the People’s Republics.

On Thursday, Ukrainian lawmakers approved by 280 votes the final reading of the law “On the peculiarities of state policy on the restoration of the state sovereignty of Ukraine over the temporarily occupied territory of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Ukraine.”

The document recognises Donbass areas as ‘occupied’ territories and calls Russia an “aggressor country.” The law implies that ‘reintegration’ of the region should be accomplished by force. The bill was submitted to the parliament by Ukrainian President Petr Poroshenko on 4 October 2017. *jk