War in Ukraine: Ukraine condemns mock referendum as "propaganda show"

war in Ukraine
Ukraine condemns mock referendum as 'propaganda show'

A soldier of the Donetsk People's Republic stands in front of a polling station in Donetsk controlled by Russian-backed separatists

A soldier of the Donetsk People's Republic stands outside a polling station in Donetsk, the Russian-backed separatist-controlled Donetsk People's Republic in eastern Ukraine. photo

© Uncredited/AP/dpa

In southern and eastern Ukraine, Russia begins mock referendums. Without the consent of Ukraine, under martial law and not according to democratic principles. The Kremlin has announced a rapid annexation of the areas.

In the Moscow-occupied areas in the east and south of the Ukraine Sham referendums on the regions joining the Russian Federation began on Friday.

The Kremlin goes to the mock referendums assuming a yes for accession to Russia and has announced a rapid annexation of the areas. According to Russian news agencies, the procedure for including the regions can be quick. At the same time, he stressed that attempts by Ukraine to take back the areas would then be interpreted as an attack on the Russian Federation. Kremlin boss Vladimir Putin had already declared that he would defend the areas with all means. "First of all, we assume that security is guaranteed for the appropriate level of holding referendums," said Peskov.

Kyiv: Russian sham referendums are "propaganda show"

Ukraine has described the sham referendums as a "Kremlin propaganda show". "Today in the occupied territories there is no legal process that can be called a 'referendum'," Presidential Advisor Mykhailo Podoliak wrote on Twitter. The "show" only serves as a background for the partial mobilization in Russia. At the same time, Podoljak said that the occupied areas must be liberated "immediately".

Kyiv threatened the organizers of the process with prosecution for high treason. In addition, the acceptance of Russian passports, especially by employees of state administrations, is legally punished. In the areas there are many collaborators.

Puschilin: "Breakthrough into a new reality"

The separatist leader Denis Puschilin spoke of a historic day in the "Donetsk People's Republic" recognized by Russia. "This referendum is crucial, it is a breakthrough into a new reality," he said in a video published on the Telegram news channel.

The Luhansk and Zaporizhia regions also informed about the start of voting. A mock referendum was also scheduled for the southern Ukrainian region of Cherson. The people there have until Tuesday to decide whether they are for or against joining the Russian Federation. The Luhansk region announced that citizens who fled to Russia could also vote there.

Voting is not recognized internationally

With the help of the result, Russia wants to incorporate the areas and invokes the "right of self-determination of peoples". Neither Ukraine nor the international community recognize the vote under occupying Russia. These are sham referendums because they are being held without Ukraine's consent, under martial law and not according to democratic principles. Free work by international independent observers is also not possible.

"We're coming back home," said Puschilin. This is not only a win for the people of Donbass, but also for Russia, which will then grow. "Donbass is Russia."

In the Zaporizhia region, only those parts controlled by Russian troops are voted on. The regional capital itself is controlled by Ukraine. The polls started without any problems, said the polling officer Galina Katyushchenko. For the time being, voting will take place outdoors – for safety reasons. According to the authorities, on September 27th voting will take place in all areas in polling stations.


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