CNN — Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a bill on Wednesday introducing martial law in four regions of Ukraine claimed by the Kremlin annexed, and a separate order restricting movement to eight Russian regions adjacent to Ukraine. The regions are Kherson, Zaporizhzhia, Donetsk and Luhansk. Russia loses control of the entire region and is hastily retreating from Kherson after Ukrainian forces reclaimed territory there. Ukraine’s foreign ministry has denounced the decree as a “new terrorist state” “to deter resistance” from the people of the region. Leaders with a Russian installation in the Kherson region early Wednesday began a massive redeployment of up to 60,000 people amid warnings about Russia’s ability to withstand a Ukrainian counterattack. Nevertheless, Putin said he would implement the policy at a scheduled meeting of the Russian Security Council. Martial law will go into effect in the area on Thursday, his decree said. “In this regard, I would like to remind you that in the Donetsk People’s Republic, Luhansk People’s Republic, Kherson Region and Zaporia Region, martial law came into force before joining Russia,” Putin said in a televised speech. “Now we have to formalize this system within the framework of Russian legislation,” he said. “Therefore, I will sign a decree on the introduction of martial law in these four subjects of the Russian Federation and send it to the Federal Council immediately,” Putin said. But when it comes to Putin’s decree, it’s always worth reading the fine print. Wednesday’s order appears to have left room for further restrictions across Russia. Paragraph 3 of the Martial Law states: “If necessary, during the period of martial law, other measures provided for in Federal Law No. 1 FKZ ‘Martial Law’ of 30 January 2002 in the Russian Federation may be applied. .” It is not yet completely clear what Wednesday’s order means for the general Russian public. After the February 24 invasion of Ukraine, rumors circulated about the introduction of martial law. However, if the last few months become a guideline, the move is part of a slow-motion strengthening of control over Russian society that began with the crushing of independent media and continued with the introduction of partial mobilization. Regional ordinances impose a set of alert levels on Russian regions. In the territory of the annexation of Crimea and Crimea, and in the Krasnodar Territory of Belgorod, Bryansk, Voronezh, Kursk and Rostov regions, authorities restrict movement and traffic and “medium alert level” for “temporary resettlement of residents” ” will be introduced. It does not provide additional details about the population that may have to be moved, and is a safe area” Moscow has not been touched either. The decree on the area also defines “high” the okrug of the South Russian Federation and the central federal okrug, which includes the capital and its surrounding areas. It remains to be seen how this will affect Moscow’s residents, some of whom are already shivering from Putin’s partial mobilization, Andrei Klishas, chairman of the Constitutional Committee of the Council of the Russian Federation, said in a statement on a Telegram channel. The council said it would consider Putin’s decree on martial law in the region as soon as possible.
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