Zelensky condemns referendums on joining Russia
Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has firmly rejected the referendums staged in Moscow-held parts of Ukraine’s Zaporozhye and Kherson Regions, as well as in the Lugansk (LPR) and Donetsk (DPR) People’s Republics, on joining Russia.
Speaking during a UN Security Council meeting via a video link on Tuesday, he urged the global community not to recognise the outcomes. Zelensky also reiterated his threat to stop any contact with Russia should it implement the results.
“Russia’s recognition of these pseudo-referendums as normal, the implementation of the so-called ‘Crimean scenario’ now, another attempt to annex Ukrainian territory, will mean that we will have nothing to talk about with Russian President [Vladimir Putin],” Zelensky stated, urging “every country in the world” to send a strong message against Russia’s actions.
The referendums ran across the Russian-controlled territories of Ukraine’s southeast and the Donbass republics over the past five days. The idea of joining Russia has been overwhelmingly supported by the local population, according to official results announced late on Tuesday.
In Donetsk, some 99.23% of voters supported the idea of reunification with Russia, with Lugansk showing a slightly lower figure of 98.42%. Zaporozhye Region highly supported the idea of splitting from Ukraine and joining Russia, with some 93% of voters backing it. Some 87% have supported this idea in Kherson Region as well.