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Occupiers are preparing to "annex" southern Ukraine to Russia – Ukrainian Intelligence

Thursday, 21 July 2022, 16:50
Occupiers are preparing to annex southern Ukraine to Russia – Ukrainian Intelligence

UKRAINSKA PRAVDA — THURSDAY, 21 JULY 2022, 16:50

[Ukrainian - ed.] Military intelligence believes that the statement of the Russian authorities about the "expansion of the geographical tasks of the special operation" is the basis for the annexation of the occupied territories in the south of Ukraine to the Russian Federation.

Source: Vadym Skibitskyi, representative of the Chief Directorate of Intelligence of the Ministry of Defence of Ukraine, at a briefing 

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Details: Skibitskyi believes that Sergey Lavrov, Russian Minister for Foreign Affairs, made this statement to prepare the international community for the promotion of the policy regarding "the protection of the Russian-speaking population in Ukraine."

Skibitskyi added that the Russians are planning to hold so-called "referendums" or to annex the occupied territories to Russia, in particular Kherson Oblast and Zaporizhzhia Oblast.

Quote: "We already know that polling stations have been created in the occupied territories, and the occupiers are actively compiling lists for holding a referendum.

The humanitarian situation is very difficult in these territories, with the Russians strictly controlling Ukrainian citizens. Therefore, it is very difficult to give any advice. However, it is necessary to maintain a fighting spirit. The resistance movement is working and you can see its results."

Background:

  • On 20 July, Sergey Lavrov, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, stated that the "geographic tasks" of the war had changed due to the supply of Western weapons to Ukraine.
  • The head of the Kherson Oblast Military Administration reported that the Kremlin had tasked collaborators in Kherson to prepare for a "referendum" on the inclusion of the oblast into the Russian Federation by the autumn.
  • The puppet government appointed by the occupiers in Zaporizhzhia Oblast wants to hold a so-called "referendum on joining the Russian Federation" at the beginning of autumn.

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