April 24, 2019 / 3:44 PM / 2 months ago

Ukraine's outgoing and new presidents denounce Russia over east Ukraine passports

Ukraine's outgoing President Petro Poroshenko makes a televised address, after Russia's authorities moved to simplify the procedure for Donbass residents to get Russian passports, in Kiev, Ukraine April 24, 2019. Mikhail Palinchak/Ukrainian Presidential Press Service/Handout via REUTERS

KIEV (Reuters) - Ukraine’s outgoing leader and president-elect separately issued statements on Wednesday denouncing Russia as an occupying force in eastern Ukraine, after Moscow moved to simplify the procedure for Donbass residents to get Russian passports.

President Petro Poroshenko said the Kremlin’s action violated international law, while incoming President Volodymyr Zelenskiy accused Russia of waging war against Ukraine.

Reporting by Andrei Makhovsky and Natalia Zinets; writing by Matthias Williams; Editing by Hugh Lawson

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