Since the beginning of Russia’s large-scale invasion of Ukraine, Crimean collaborators have begun to actively support the so-called “Putin’s special operation”. In previous articles, we have already analyzed the issues of forced “mobilization”, threats against the “nationalization” of Ukrainian property on the peninsula, as well as the consequences of sanctions, imposed by the world against Russia.

However, the situation is developing quite rapidly, and the self-proclaimed “government” of Crimea is beginning to “master” new horizons. More precisely, not completely new, but more forgotten. We are talking about the misappropriation of Ukrainian property in the territories, temporarily occupied by the Kremlin. It turns out that Crimean collaborators have been waiting for this for a long time. That is, it is not enough for them to betray the state and support the aggressor, they need to rob Ukraine as much as possible and solve their own problems at the expense of other people’s property. Experts of the Association of Reintegration of Crimea analyzed the situation.

Prior to the full-scale invasion, the Crimean occupiers were already trying to seize Ukrainian property. This applies to fake “nationalized” real estate in 2014-2017, as well as other property of Ukrainian citizens. It should be noted that collaborators with the Kremlin’s permission do the same in the occupied Donbass.

In particular, in 2014 in the city of Makiivka, militants seized equipment from a shoe factory and took it in a hitherto unknown direction [1]. After the occupation of the Kherson region, the self-proclaimed “authorities” of Crimea began to actively plunder Ukraine. First of all, it is worth mentioning the capture of the North Crimean Canal, which now supplies water to the temporarily occupied peninsula. Experts have already estimated that the state loses 32 million hryvnias every day from the illegal use of water resources of the Ukrainian People [2].

Thus, in almost a month and a half of the war, the occupiers stole water for 620 million hryvnias. This is the data of the State Ecological Inspectorate, which confirmed that currently all hydraulic structures of the canal, which regulate the supply of water from the Kakhovka Reservoir, are under the control of the occupiers. To be more precise, Ukraine loses 50 cubic meters of water per second [2]. All this in order for Crimean collaborators to report on “solving the water problem on the peninsula”. Earlier we wrote that there are already soldiers of the aggressor awarded for “taking” the channel.

Obviously, the occupiers simply do not know any other way than to seize someone else’s property. For example, last year, border guards detained a car with ship equipment that they were trying to smuggle into the temporarily occupied peninsula. These are speakers and communication and navigation systems [3].

Admittedly, the war completely freed the hands of Kremlin protégés on the peninsula. Since the beginning of hostilities, they have been actively discussing the need to “restore rail traffic” between Crimea and Kherson. Of course, these plans were allegedly explained by “the need to organize humanitarian corridors, relocate refugees and other good intentions”. According to Ukrainian authorities, the occupiers have already established military communication, although trains have not yet reached the city of Kherson [4]. Instead, it soon became clear why the Crimean collaborators tried so hard. They simply wanted to establish routes for the deportation of Ukrainian citizens and property of Ukrainian enterprises to the occupied Crimea. Such intentions became clear thanks to reports from the population of the occupied territories of Kherson and Zaporizhia regions.

In particular, the occupiers took captured Ukrainian activists to the occupied peninsula, who were then held in places of detention in the Crimea. For this purpose, the isolators were specially vacated and filled with pro-Ukrainian citizens [5]. That is, these are peculiar places of imprisonment, where torture is used only because people do not want to live in the realities of the “Russian world”. However, there is another component of establishing such routes – the illegal export of Ukrainian property to the occupied peninsula. This is done under the guise of “evacuation of enterprises” that allegedly “can be destroyed by the Armed Forces of Ukraine”. In fact, it is an open looting of occupied territories, and such cases, unfortunately, are becoming more common. All of them concern Kherson and Zaporizhia oblasts due to their territorial proximity to the peninsula.

The mayor of Melitopol, which is currently temporarily occupied, was one of the first to report such facts. In particular, he noted that the occupiers began to export equipment from the city’s factories to the Crimea, and more precisely – to Dzhankoy. We are talking about the equipment and facilities of Melitopol’s plants and enterprises in the region, which are simply loaded and sent by rail to the occupied peninsula. According to Ivan Fedorov, this indicates the temporary nature of the occupation, because otherwise, the occupiers would not have exported property [6].

It should be noted that normal logic is not typical for Russia, as the occupiers in Crimea are destroying infrastructure and stealing resources, and at the same time criminally call it allegedly “Russian territory”. Such a fate can await the occupied Ukrainian cities, which can be used as a buffer zone. And for the Kremlin it does not matter in what conditions ordinary people will live there.

Note that the factory equipment is only part of the crimes of Crimean collaborators. Thus, according to representatives of the Zaporozhye military administration, the Russians from Melitopol to the Crimea export working agricultural machinery and mineral fertilizers. Regarding the latter, there are confirmed facts of export of four trucks of nitrate to the territory of the temporarily occupied Crimea [7].

There is information about the export of five ships with Ukrainian grain from the port of Berdyansk to the Crimea. Such information came from local authorities and was confirmed by residents of the temporarily occupied Berdyansk [8]. That is, in fact, Russia not only kills Ukrainian citizens and destroys peaceful cities, but also robs the population of the country and threatens food security, because in wartime it is difficult to predict the progress of the sowing campaign and yields.

And this despite the fact that Russia constantly reminds the world that it is one of the largest exporters of wheat, which is growing in price every year as its per capita consumption increases. This applies to various countries, including the United States [9]. Then it is quite “clear” why plunder Ukraine, if Russia is able to provide the occupied peninsula with wheat. Most likely, the Crimean collaborators can’t wait, because there is already an acute shortage of many food products on the peninsula, which is a consequence of Western sanctions. This is the whole cynicism of the Kremlin’s actions in Ukraine: to talk about “liberation” and to do everything for the genocide of the Ukrainian people. The fact is that after the war there may be a real regional food crisis, which Russia is only bringing closer with its actions.

We propose to dwell in more detail on the problem of export of agricultural machinery to demonstrate the cynicism of Crimean collaborators. According to Melitopol’s Mayor Ivan Fedorov, the occupiers robbed agricultural machinery stores worth more than one and a half million euros. Thanks to GPS-navigators installed on the equipment, it became known that it was exported to the Crimea. These are the most modern combines, tractors and drills from JohnDeere [10].

This situation clearly demonstrates the incompetence of the Crimean collaborators, who are accustomed only to rob and appropriate [11]. For many years, the self-proclaimed “government” only promised the Crimeans new equipment. In particular, they planned in 2019 to purchase 100 units of agricultural machinery for a total of 700 million rubles [12]. It is likely that this equipment was never purchased, as economic experts in the same 2019 talked about the crisis and the degradation of agriculture in the temporarily occupied peninsula. We are talking about reducing the indicators of marketable products by more than 15% annually [13].

Now it is clear why the Crimean collaborators took the equipment to the peninsula so quickly. We will probably soon hear statements from them that the authorities have solved the problem of shortage of agricultural machinery. However, the question arises: why at the expense of Ukrainian and European companies, collaborators solve their problems. Kherson Region also suffered from the robbery. In particular, pumping stations and sprinklers for irrigated agriculture are currently being exported from its territory to the Crimea.

There, the occupiers take out vegetables from the warehouses of Ukrainian farmers, with which there are also quite significant problems on the peninsula. At the same time, the self-proclaimed “head” of Crimean agriculture Alima Zaredinova declared the establishment of “sustainable supply of vegetable crops from the Kherson region” [14]. But it does not in any way state that these supplies are anything other than the forced export of marketable agricultural products. By the way, even such a robbery did not help reduce prices in the Crimean markets, as entrepreneurs do not want to trade in cheap stolen products [15].

According to Ms. Zaredinova, Kherson vegetables will not only help provide the peninsula with products, but will also stabilize the market, ie protect against rising prices [16]. And this despite the fact that the Kherson region itself has a humanitarian crisis, because the occupiers do not provide “green corridors”, and Ukraine can not bring humanitarian aid to the population.

At the same time, pro-Russian media reported that for the first time in eight years, consignments of vegetables began to arrive on the peninsula. In their opinion, this is a direct indication that the population of Kherson region allegedly “wants to go to Russia” [17]. It is very strange to hear such statements, because Kherson residents simply have no choice, as the occupiers arbitrarily take the products and send them to the Crimea. It should be noted that at the beginning of the occupation, Crimean collaborators did not allow Ukrainian products to enter the peninsula and boasted about these decisions. For example, in 2014 the occupiers did not allow 40 tons of fish products from the same Kherson to the Crimea [18]. But the Kremlin at the time managed to feed the Crimean people with slogans and high ideas. Now the rhetoric has changed dramatically, due to the total shortage of food on the temporarily occupied peninsula.

However, not only products and equipment are exported to Crimea, but also looted property of Ukrainian citizens. Russian marauders are in special demand for cars and household appliances, which are exported to the temporarily occupied Crimea from Kherson and Zaporizhia regions [19]. Probably the majority of Ukrainian citizens who will return home after the liberation of these regions will find out that their property was banally stolen by the Russian “liberators”. The occupiers also export valuables, paintings, precious metals, etc. to the Crimea [20]. So, in fact, they take away everything that Ukrainians think they don’t need. Such “freedom” is fully correlated with the ideals of the “Russian world”.

There are also more cynical cases. Thus, the occupiers confiscated eight buses, which were sent to evacuate residents of Melitopol [21]. Fortunately, the buses were returned, and they evacuated 600 residents of the occupied Ukrainian city. However, in reality they could be sent to the occupied Crimea and handed over to the local “administration” in order to organize passenger traffic. It should be noted that the traitors of Ukraine from among the fake “authorities” of Melitopol, also began to export their production to the Crimea, which indicates a sense of imminent liberation of the occupied Ukrainian territories [22].

These cases indicate that it is much easier for Crimean collaborators to take someone elses than to build their own. The need became especially acute after the beginning of the so-called “special operation” of the Kremlin in Ukraine, which forced the self-proclaimed “government” of Crimea to “tighten its belts”.

Even so, in the negotiation process with Ukraine, Russia states that “it is not going to discuss the fate of the occupied Crimea”. Despite such rhetoric, the deoccupation of the Ukrainian peninsula is becoming increasingly obvious and inevitable, as it is impossible to solve problems by looting Ukraine’s national property for years and criticizing its policies.

First, Crimean collaborators confiscated Ukrainian property on the peninsula, then “nationalized” other property, and now they are looting our occupied territories. At the same time, they believe that they have a moral right to make statements about “life without Ukraine”.

During the war, the role of Russia in the occupied Crimea became increasingly apparent. However, Crimean collaborators need to remember something. The norms of the Convention for the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War qualify the actions of the self-proclaimed “authorities” of the peninsula as war crimes. In particular, Article 87 of the document imposes on the occupiers the obligation to provide the population of the occupied territories with food and daily necessities, and the provisions of Article 33 prohibit the robbery of the population of these territories [24].

This is what the occupiers are doing today. That is, the export of agricultural products poses a threat to the lives of the population of the occupied territories of Kherson and Zaporizhia regions, which can be considered a war crime. Moreover, in accordance with the norms of the European Convention on the Non-Applicability of Statutory Limitations to Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes, Crimean collaborators will be held criminally liable for these actions, as they significantly increase the negative consequences of Russia’s military invasion. Thus, during their lives, Kremlin protégés in Crimea must know that punishment will be inevitable, and will find them even many years after they committed war crimes against their own homeland.