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    Moscow announces the start of the referendum in the occupied areas. The condemnation of the G7: ‘Ready to impose new sanctions’

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    “We G7 leaders strongly condemn the sham referendums, which Russia tries to use to create a false pretext, to change the status of Ukrainian territorial sovereignty, subject to ongoing aggression from Russia”. The members of the G7 write it in a note. “These actions clearly violate the charter of the United Nations and international law, and go in the diametrically opposite direction to the rule of law among nations”, it continues. “We will never recognize these referendums which appear to be a step towards Russian annexation and we will never recognize an alleged annexation if it happens.” That’s what we read in a note of G7 leaders on Russian referendums in Ukraine. The “farce referendums” launched today by Russia “have no legal effect and legitimacy as demonstrated by the hasty methods of their organization, which in no way respects democratic norms, and by the blatant intimidation of the local population”.

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    “We are ready to impose new economic costs on Russia, on individuals and entities, inside and outside Russia, who are giving political or economic support to Russia’s illegal attempt to change the status of the Ukrainian territory. “ The leaders of the G7 say this in a statement on the referendum in progress in Ukraine.

    Russian news agencies announced the start of the referendum on annexation to the Federation of certain areas of Ukraine controlled in whole or in part by Moscow. Voting will take place until 27 September in the pro-Russian separatist regions of Donetsk and Lugansk (east) and in the Russian-occupied areas of Kherson and Zaporizhzhia (south), in the context of Moscow’s military offensive against Ukraine. Meanwhile, Kiev and the West have called the votes a “farce”.

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    “The Russian occupiers have organized armed groups to surround homes and force people to participate in the so-called ‘referendum’. Citizens have been threatened:” Those who do not take part in the vote will automatically be fired from work. “” The authorities have banned the local population to leave the city between 23 and 27 September (dates on which the annexation referendum to Russia is held) “, said the Ukrainian governor in exile of Lugansk Sergey Gaidai, reported by the Guardian.

    Moscow for its part argues that the referendums in the (self-proclaimed) People’s Republics of Donetsk (PRD) and Lugansk (PRL) and other territories comply with international standards and the UN Charter. “The residents of the PRD, the PRL and other liberated territories have this right, a legal right. And in the current situation it is the right to life,” said the President of the Council of the Russian Federation. Valentina Matviyenko.

    “For security reasons”, in the first four days of the referendum, the population of the four regions will be invited to vote near their homes, rather than at the polling stations, or they will be driven around the homes of citizens, explains the news agency. Russian state tax.

    Today i polling stations for refugees in several Russian cities. The Central Electoral Commission of the Kherson region predicts that around 750,000 people will participate in the voting, with half a million people registered as voters in the Zaporizhzhia region. Ballots for the referendum were printed for 1.5 million voters of the self-proclaimed Republic of Donetsk (RPD). 450 polling stations are available in the Republic and more than 200 in Russia for the residents of the Democratic Republic. The Central Electoral Commission of the Democratic Republic has opened 461 polling stations in the Republic and 201 in Russia. According to the Zaporozhzhia Region, 394 polling stations have been established in the region and another 102 in Russia. Citizens of the Kherson Region can cast their vote in any of the eight territorial or 198 local electoral commissions, or they can do so in Crimea, Moscow or other Russian cities.

    The international community considers the referendum vote “illegitimate”, and even China has spoken out against it. The world will recognize neither the vote nor the probable declaration of annexation by the Kremlin, but the possible repercussions on the conflict in Ukraine are frightening.

    Source: Ansa

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