- Russia says majority vote for annexation
- ‘Welcome dwelling, to Russia!’ says Medvedev
- Russian parliament says could think about annexation Oct. 4
- US plans UN decision to reject any change to Ukraine
- Undersea Russian fuel pipelines mysteriously broken
LONDON/ZAPORIZHZHIA, Ukraine, Sept 28 (Reuters) – Russian-installed officers in 4 occupied areas of Ukraine reported large majorities of votes in favour of becoming a member of Russia because the United States deliberate a U.N. decision condemning the referendums as shams and Russia remained defiant.
The United States was additionally getting ready a brand new spherical of sanctions in opposition to Russia ought to it annex Ukrainian territory and a $1.1 billion arms package deal for Ukraine that can be introduced quickly, U.S. officers stated. learn extra
U.S. Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken stated the United States and its allies remained dedicated to European power safety, after Germany, Sweden and Denmark stated assaults brought on main leaks from two Russian power pipelines. It remained removed from clear who could be behind the leaks.
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Hastily organized votes happened over 5 days within the japanese areas of Donetsk and Luhansk, and in Zaporizhzhia and Kherson to the south, that collectively make up about 15% of Ukrainian territory.
Vote tallies from full results on Tuesday within the 4 provinces ranged from 87% to 99.2% in favour of becoming a member of Russia, in accordance to Russia-appointed officers. The head of the higher home of the Russian parliament stated the chamber would possibly think about annexation on Oct. 4.
“The results are clear. Welcome home, to Russia!,” Dmitry Medvedev, a former president who serves as deputy chairman of Russia’s Security Council and an ally of President Vladimir Putin, stated on Telegram.
Within the occupied territories, Russian-installed officers took poll packing containers from home to home in what Ukraine and the West stated was an illegitimate, coercive train to create a authorized pretext for Russia to annex the 4 areas.
“This farce in the occupied territories cannot even be called an imitation of a referendum,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy stated in video tackle late on Tuesday.
The United States will introduce a decision on the U.N. Security Council calling on member states not to recognise any change to Ukraine and obligating Russia to withdraw its troops, U.S. envoy Linda Thomas-Greenfield stated.
“Russia’s sham referenda, if accepted, will open a pandora’s box that we cannot close,” she stated at a council assembly.
Russia has the power to veto a decision within the Security Council, however Thomas-Greenfield stated that might immediate the United States to take the difficulty to the U.N. General Assembly.
“Any referenda held under these conditions, at the barrel of a gun, can never be remotely close to free or fair,” Britain’s Deputy U.N. Ambassador James Kariuki stated.
Russia’s ambassador to the United Nations, Vassily Nebenzia, instructed the assembly that the referendums had been carried out transparently and according to electoral norms.
“This process is going to continue if Kyiv does not recognise its mistakes and its strategic errors and doesn’t start to be guided by the interests of its own people and not blindly carry out the will of those people who are playing them,” he stated.
If Russia annexes the 4 Ukrainian areas, Putin may painting any Ukrainian try to recapture them as an assault on Russia itself.
Putin stated final week he was prepared to use nuclear weapons to defend the “territorial integrity” of Russia.
But Mykhailo Podolyak, an adviser to Zelenskiy, instructed Reuters that Kyiv wouldn’t be swayed by nuclear threats or by the annexation votes, and would press on with plans to retake all territory occupied by invading Russian forces.
He stated Ukrainians who helped organise the referendums would face treason costs and no less than 5 years in jail. Ukrainians who had been pressured to vote wouldn’t be punished.
US ARMS PACKAGE
The new U.S. arms package deal will embody HIMARS launcher techniques, accompanying munitions, varied forms of counter drone techniques and radar techniques, together with spares, coaching and technical assist, a supply briefed on the plan stated.
Russia once more warned the United States in opposition to arming Ukraine.
“In instigating Kiev to continue using the military equipment received from the West, Washington does not realise the riskiness of its actions … Our steps to defend the Fatherland will be firm and decisive,” Russia’s U.S. envoy Anatoly Antonov stated on the embassy’s Telegram channel.
Diplomats say the nuclear sabre-rattling is an try by Russia to scare the West into lowering its assist for Ukraine.
None of the 4 areas which held referendums is totally below Russia’s management, with Ukrainian forces reporting extra advances since they routed Russian troops in a fifth province, Kharkiv, this month.
Zelenskiy stated the Donetsk area within the east remained his nation’s – and Russia’s – prime strategic precedence, with “particularly severe” combating engulfing a number of cities.
The basic employees of Ukraine’s navy stated late on Tuesday that Russian forces had shelled seven cities in Donetsk.The navy stated 20 cities within the Zaporizhzhia area in south-central Ukraine and 35 cities and villages within the Kherson area within the south had been additionally hit.
Leonid Pasechnik, a separatist chief of Luhansk, stated on Telegram three municipal fuel staff had been killed and one wounded by Ukrainian shelling in Brianka.
“The missiles supplied by NATO countries are killing unarmed children, women, elderly people and municipal utility workers,” he stated.
Reuters couldn’t instantly confirm battlefield stories.
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Reporting by Reuters bureaus; Writing by Cynthia Osterman; Editing by Grant McCool and Michael Perry
Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.