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Ukraine: Skadovsk and Melitopol residents vote in referendum on joining Russia amid international pushback05:21

Ukraine: Skadovsk and Melitopol residents vote in referendum on joining Russia amid international pushback

Ukraine, Skadovsk, Melitopol
September 23, 2022 at 15:45 GMT +00:00 · Published

The first day of Russia joining the referendum on the Zaporozhye and Kherson region started in Melitopol on Friday. Residents of Skadovsk and Melitopol Kherson region, which are controlled by Russia, were seen at polling stations, voting and casting ballots.

Irina, an employee of the Melitopol enterprise where the voting is being held, said she expects changes for the better as a result of the referendum.

"Everything will be wonderful. I've been waiting for this," she said.

According to a Skadovsk resident, a referendum was needed to normalise life in the region.

"I personally think it's necessary. At least I see the situation today. That it is unstable. There is no stability at all," he added.

Secretary of the Election Commission Elena Manolenko noted that voting is necessary for all citizens.

The local governments of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, as well as those established in Kherson and Zaporozhye after the regions came under Russian control, announced earlier this week that the voting would take place from September 23-27.

President Vladimir Putin said he was ready to support the decisions of the areas, with Russia prepared to 'ensure safe conditions' for the votes and let people 'express their will.'

Meanwhile, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky condemned the 'pseudo-referendum', while his press secretary Sergei Nikiforov claimed that the action meant there would be no chance of a diplomatic solution to the conflict.

US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan described them as 'sham referenda', while President Joe Biden said 'Russia has violated the basic principles of the UN Charter' and had also made 'open nuclear threats against Europe'.

French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said their countries would not recognise the results, while EU Foreign Policy Chief Josep Borrell said those involved in organising them 'will be held accountable.'

Moscow launched the military offensive in Ukraine earlier this year, after recognising the independence of the LPR and DPR.

Kiev condemned the action, while Zelensky ordered martial law and full mobilisation in February.

Ukraine: Skadovsk and Melitopol residents vote in referendum on joining Russia amid international pushback05:21
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The first day of Russia joining the referendum on the Zaporozhye and Kherson region started in Melitopol on Friday. Residents of Skadovsk and Melitopol Kherson region, which are controlled by Russia, were seen at polling stations, voting and casting ballots.

Irina, an employee of the Melitopol enterprise where the voting is being held, said she expects changes for the better as a result of the referendum.

"Everything will be wonderful. I've been waiting for this," she said.

According to a Skadovsk resident, a referendum was needed to normalise life in the region.

"I personally think it's necessary. At least I see the situation today. That it is unstable. There is no stability at all," he added.

Secretary of the Election Commission Elena Manolenko noted that voting is necessary for all citizens.

The local governments of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, as well as those established in Kherson and Zaporozhye after the regions came under Russian control, announced earlier this week that the voting would take place from September 23-27.

President Vladimir Putin said he was ready to support the decisions of the areas, with Russia prepared to 'ensure safe conditions' for the votes and let people 'express their will.'

Meanwhile, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky condemned the 'pseudo-referendum', while his press secretary Sergei Nikiforov claimed that the action meant there would be no chance of a diplomatic solution to the conflict.

US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan described them as 'sham referenda', while President Joe Biden said 'Russia has violated the basic principles of the UN Charter' and had also made 'open nuclear threats against Europe'.

French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said their countries would not recognise the results, while EU Foreign Policy Chief Josep Borrell said those involved in organising them 'will be held accountable.'

Moscow launched the military offensive in Ukraine earlier this year, after recognising the independence of the LPR and DPR.

Kiev condemned the action, while Zelensky ordered martial law and full mobilisation in February.