Donbass Nationalizes Oligarch Enterprises
by Stephen Lendman
On March 1, the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics (DPR and LPR) nationalized Ukrainian oligarch enterprises - notably those owned by Rinat Akhmetov, one of Ukraine’s richest businessmen, earlier a member of its parliament.
He and other oligarchs reportedly helped fund Washington’s Euromaidan coup, replacing democratic governance with Nazi-infested putschist rule.
Donbass officials discussed nationalizing oligarch enterprises after breaking away from Kiev, rejecting fascist rule. They have considerable influence over Ukrainian politics, including billionaire Petro Poroshenko installed by Washington as president.
Donbass oligarch enterprises pay taxes to Kiev, not DPR and LPR. They helped finance war on the independent republics. Nationalizing their enterprises stops this practice.
Acting now and not earlier was because of Kiev’s rail and motorways blockade of the region, enforced by fascist militants. Donbass had to act.
Days earlier, their officials warned Kiev they’d halt coal deliveries to Ukraine and nationalize local enterprises if blockade conditions weren’t lifted by midnight March 1.
On Wednesday, DPR leader Alexander Zakharchenko and LPR’s Igor Plotniksky confirmed they’d halt coal deliveries.
A special office was established to manage nationalized enterprises - including DPR-based Yenakiyevo Steel operations, LPR coal mines, and numerous other businesses.
Enterprises it now controls will seek markets in Russia and other countries, Ukraine’s faltering economy suffering another blow. It’s already bankrupt, unable to function without foreign support.
Blockade organizers said they intend expanding it, begun in late January. Kiev called Donbass nationalizations an attempt to continue conflict, claiming coal supplies belong to Ukraine.
On Wednesday, Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said “(i)n principle, we are witnessing the fact that the regions left behind by the (Kiev) are falling into an even more difficult situation, being in complete blockade by extremist elements.”
“So, of course, to some extent, one can understand actions taken by the leadership of those regions which…were rejected by their state.”
“We are talking about the lives of several million people, so of course, people need to survive.”
According to DPR’s Zakharchenk, around two months are needed to restart operations, reorienting them to markets outside Ukraine.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
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