Occupying authorities in Donetsk plan for 70% vote in favour of joining Russia in "referendum" media

MONDAY, 25 JULY 2022, 12:30

The Kremlin-controlled group "DPR" (Donetsk People’s Republic) plans to hold an imitation "referendum" throughout the entire territory of the Donetsk Oblast in which the result will be that 70% of the votes are in favour of joining the Russian Federation.

Source: journalists from the Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty project Donbas.Realities, with reference to sources in Ukrainian intelligence

Details: Journalists from Donbas.Realities obtained a document from their sources in one of the intelligence agencies of Ukraine. It was drafted by the occupying forces and their henchmen and is entitled "A strategy for the preparation and holding of a referendum on the incorporation of the DNR (Donetsk People’s Republic) into the Russian Federation".


Electoral rolls are currently being drawn up in the occupied territories, sometimes through humanitarian aid distribution centres, and election commissions are being set up.

In particular, the use of so-called "street election commissions" located in tents is planned.

According to the "strategy", voting in the occupied territories will involve a "voter mark": the index finger is marked with ink that does not wash off for several days. The "strategy" says "this is an effective method for countries where identity documents are not standardised".


The document describes several stages of the so-called PR campaign, but the date of the pseudo-referendum is not specified. According to the source, 11 September is one of the options that Russia is considering.

The "strategy" specifies what turnout and support is required in order to reach 70%.


As for the south of Ukraine, according to Donbas.Realities there is a problem, and it is acknowledged by the occupying authorities: "In order to appeal to the President of Russia [about joining the Russian Federation - ed.], an institution that gives the appearance of a broad expression of the will of the people needs to be established."

There are several options for what to call the institution in Zaporizhzhia Oblast: the "people's committee", "people's assembly", or "people's council".

Russian forces in the occupied territories are currently appointing their "pseudo-governments". There are reports that they intend to organise illegal referendums on "joining the Russian Federation" there and that Russian passports are being issued to residents of these territories.

The Ukrainian Ministry for the Reintegration of the Temporarily Occupied Territories is currently considering introducing criminal liability for obtaining a Russian passport in an occupied territory.

Human rights defenders have explained that passportisation is "a conscious policy of the aggressor country and that it is a crime", but the idea that someone who obtains a Russian passport needs to be prosecuted "is dangerous and could be used by Russian propaganda to further intimidate residents of the occupied territories".