Donetsk, Oct 6 – DAN. Ukrainian authorities were forced into the prolongation of the Donbass special status law, said DPR envoy to the negotiations Denis Pushilin.

"Russia and the Republics have been seeking the prolongation of the Donbass special status law. Today's decision of Rada, made despite protests from radicals and Kiev's reluctance to provide the region with special status, shows Russia's leading role in defining the destiny of our region and the whole Ukraine," Pusilin's statement seen by DAN reads.

Earlier today, Alexey Chesnakov, the director of Political Conjuncture Center, told TASS news agency that Kiev had to prolong the law on Donbass special status due to Donbass Republics and Russia's position of principle and that it testifies to Russia's decisive influence in defining the destiny of Donbass, and all Ukraine.

On Friday, October 6, Ukrainian parliament has adopted the law on "establishing conditions for peace settlement of the situation in separate regions of Donetsk and Lugansk regions", which prolongs Donbass special status for one more year. The document was needed as the law providing special status, adopted back in 2014, was due to expire on October 18, 2017. The law is a key to political settlement of the conflict in Eastern Ukraine. Donetsk, Lugansk and Moscow have been saying that rejection to prolong the law would mean Kiev's rejection to commit to the Minsk Agreements.

The law, adopted by Rada today, stipulates the withdrawal of all 'unlawful armed groups and hardware, fighters and mercenaries' from Donbass as a condition to enacting the law on the region's status. *ot