White House anticipates that the Russian Federation is preparing to hold "referendums" in September

·2 min read

KATERYNA TYSHCHENKO — SATURDAY, 3 SEPTEMBER 2022, 23:12

The US sees signs that Russia intends to hold illegal "referendums" on the annexation of the occupied territories of Ukraine in September.

Source: the US National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications, John Kirby, in an interview with the oppositional Russian TV channel Dozhd (Rain), now based in Latvia

Quote: "We're seeing signs that Russia still intends to hold these sham referendums this month.

This is their way of feigning some semblance of political legitimacy for the military control over occupied territories that they have already achieved, or are about to achieve, or plan on achieving in the future. In a sense, a referendum could compensate for the fact that they did not gain the endorsement of the majority of the population of these oblasts, so they are trying to establish their legitimacy politically."

Details: According to Kirby, such "referendums" are "another Kremlin scheme to claim some legitimacy in this unprovoked, illegitimate war they have unleashed in Ukraine."

The representative of the White House emphasised that according to new surveys, Ukrainians do not want to be part of Russia, but want to be a sovereign state.

Background:

  • Ukrainian intelligence earlier reported that Russia plans to hold "referendums" in Kherson and Zaporizhzhia oblasts on 11 September.

  • The Russian occupiers created "election commissions" to hold a so-called "referendum" on the inclusion of the captured regions into Russia. Also, the Russian occupiers launched preparations for a pseudo-referendum on the annexation of Kherson Oblast to Russia - they began to distribute money to pensioners and pressure young people to enrol in the captured universities.

  • According to the Latvia-based Russian online publication Meduza, in July, the Russians conducted an opinion poll in the occupied territories of Kherson and Zaporizhzhia oblasts as to whether their inhabitants wanted to join Russia; only 30% were in favour of joining the Russian Federation.

  • On 7 August, Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy warned: "If the Russian occupying forces decide to hold even one pseudo-referendum in the territories they occupy in Ukraine at the moment, any future possibility of negotiations with Russia will be closed."

  • According to intelligence sources, this fake declaration of political determination may not take place in all of the temporarily occupied districts of Ukraine, due to the failures of the Russian army.

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