For 25 years, Russia has supported – artificially supported – the independence of the so-called Ukraine with the help of cheap gas and other resources.
We [Russia] want to trade directly with consumers of our gas in Europe, with Germany and so on, without intermediaries. Therefore, we want to exclude these intermediaries. Therefore, either Ukraine will be part of Russia or the pipes will go around Ukraine.
IWe should not talk about Ukraine as a different country. We must talk about the reunification of the Russian people. We are a single people.
And it is necessary telling our Western partners not about fascists here but a noble idea. We must say: guys, we have a single Russian people that is the largest disunited people in the world.
Ukraine is a sovereign country, whose independence has been recognized by the UN. Moreover, the Russians and the Ukrainians have been different peoples throughout the history and until today. Ukraine is recognised in international law as a sovereign nation state, with its own flag, nationality, language etc.