During an interview for the film “Putin”, which was made by Russian reporter Andrey Kondrashev, the Russian President said that under no circumstances will he give up the Crimea.
One of the questions that Kondrashev asked Putin concerned the circumstances under which he would return the Crimea.
“What, have you lost your mind? Under no circumstances, and I never will,” replied Putin.
A few days earlier, a film by another Russian reporter, Vladimir Solovyov, was released under the title The World Order 2018. In it, Putin said that Moscow may have been intentionally led to annex the Crimea. “Sometimes it seems to me - and I think that there are certain grounds for this - that someone consciously led us to such a line, and once there, we had to act the way we acted. Not many expected that we would act so quickly, so resolutely, if not boldly,” said Putin.
Russia began the process of annexing the Crimea in March 2014 and adopted the corresponding treaty as well as the law on the procedure for Crimea and Sevastopol to become part of the Russian Federation. Both documents were adopted by the lower house of the Russian parliament, the State Duma. Neither Ukraine nor the international community recognizes Crimea as belonging to the Russian Federation.
On September 15, 2015, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine established February 20, 2014 as the date of the beginning of the temporary occupation of Crimea and Sevastopol.