Ukraine on Saturday declared null and void a decree in Crimea that prohibits foreigners from owning land in most parts of the peninsula illegally annexed by Russia.

The spokesman of the country’s Foreign Ministry accused Moscow of trying to Russify Crimea, underlining that the decree issued by Russian President Vladimir Putin would have no legal consequences for Ukraine.

Speaking to Ukraine’s National News Agency, Ukrinform, in an interview, Oleg Nikolenko added that with the decree, Russia was once again ignoring fundamental legal norms and principles, and said that Kyiv would restore the rights that had been violated once it re-established its sovereignty in the region.

Nikolenko went on to say that the flouting of Ukrainians’ property rights in Crimea would be the focus of the Crimean Platform’s attention at its inaugural summit this year.

The decree prohibiting foreigners from owning land in most parts of Crimea was signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin on March 20, 2020 and entered into force on Saturday.

Russian forces entered the Crimean Peninsula in February 2014 with Russian President Vladimir Putin formally dividing the region into two separate federal subjects of the Russian Federation the following month.

Turkey and the US, as well as the UN General Assembly, view the annexation as illegal.

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