As the war in Ukraine rages on, Russians in border regions and Ukrainians under Kremlin occupation in Crimea won't be able to enjoy the comforts of traditional Christmas markets and New Year festivities, as major public events for the holiday season were scrapped by the warmonger.
According to the Daily Star, Christmas and New Year celebrations have been canceled in Russian border regions and invaded territories, including occupied Crimea, amid Kremlin fears of a Ukrainian attack.
Putin ally Roman Starovoit announced that fireworks have been banned in Kursk and Belgorod, both of which have been targeted by Ukrainian incursions.
The Crimean peninsula was also included in the policy. While Crimea was recognized under international law as part of Ukraine, Putin annexed the land in February 2014.
Sergey Aksyonov, Crimea's Kremlin-aligned leader, announced, "There are no plans to hold large public events in the republic of Crimea for the New Year and Christmas. The main priority is safety."
Aksyonov added that while public events were sacked, some traditions would carry on, though they would be considerably scaled back.
"But, of course, we will do everything necessary to create a festive mood for Crimeans. New Year holidays for children will be held in a limited format," the Putin ally continued while noting, "Christmas trees will be installed and the streets will be decorated in public areas."
Aksyonov additionally warned Crimeans that "terrorist strikes" were a possibility, in an apparent attempt to spin reality of Ukrainians fighting against Putin's regime to regain control of their land.
In Russia, gifts are exchanged on Dec. 31 and a Father Christmas or Santa Claus alternative known as Grandfather Frost is celebrated.
New Year is the main holiday celebrated in Russia, with Orthodox Christmas following on Jan. 7.
Despite low morale across the country and within Putin's weakened troops, which continue to face challenges on the front lines, Russians will be given no reprieve from their leader this holiday season.
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Reports of Putin cancelling Christmas followed claims from a Kremlin insider who alleged the despot died in late October after suffering a heart attack. The source claimed Putin's remains were being guarded at his Valdai residence and that body doubles were being used to cover his death.
Telegram channel General SVR claimed that Putin's health had been rapidly deteriorating for quite some time when he was found "convulsing" on the floor and had to be "resuscitated."
Putin crony Dmitry Peskov denied the rumors as "absurd information hoaxes."
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