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Russian president planned invasion of Ukraine before 2004 – Putin’s ex-aide

According to Putin’s former adviser, the Kremlin was planning an invasion of Ukraine and Crimea’s annexation long before the Revolution of Dignity
Russian president planned invasion of Ukraine before 2004 – Putin’s ex-aide

Russian president prepared invasion of Ukraine before 2004, so the Euromaidan became a perfect excuse for Russia to invade Ukraine, said former adviser to the head of the Russian Federation Andrei Illarionov in an interview with Apostrophe, Joinfo.ua reports. According to him, the revolution in Ukraine has changed the plans of the Kremlin.

“There have been several attempts to implement the plan [to invade Ukraine and seize Crimea – Ed.]. The first attempt took place during the Orange Revolution in late 2004-early 2005, but the low level of preparation of this operation had forced the Kremlin to postpone it,” – said Illarionov.

“Then the plan would be carried out in 2010, during the presidential elections in Ukraine – in the event if Yulia Tymoshenko [then the PM] won Viktor Yanukovych [ex-president of Ukraine], – said  Illarionov.

According to him, if Yulia Tymoshenko won, Putin would launch the invasion under the legend of “protection of the Crimeans” from the power of Kyiv, which the Kremlin called “fascists.”

“Since Yanukovich has won the elections, the Crimea’s annexation plan had been postponed again. The next attempt was scheduled for the presidential elections in 2015. In the event that Yanukovych did not get more than half of the votes and if the new Maidan would began in Kyiv., then Moscow could carry out its plan,”- said Putin’s former adviser.

“However, the Maidan started earlier, when he was not really expected either in Kyiv or Moscow. Therefore, Putin had to revise his plans and to carry out the annexation of Crimea in 2014,” – he added.

It should be recalled that the Russian president use every opportunity to express his view of Ukrainian statehood and history. Thus, speaking at the forum of public movement “Russian People’s Front,” Vladimir Putin said that Donbas was transferred to Ukraine by a pure coincidence, and without thinking.