Ukraine accuses Russia of plotting to create a pro-Moscow ‘people’s republic’ in Kherson


KYIV, Ukraine – Ukrainian officials on Saturday accused Russia of planning a fake referendum on the creation of a pro-Moscow “people’s republic” in the southern Black Sea city of Kherson.

Russian forces seized the port city, which has a population of 290,000, on March 3 after a three-day siege. It was the first major city to fall after the invasion of Moscow.

“The Russians are now desperately trying to organize a fake ‘referendum’ for a fake ‘people’s republic’ in Kherson,” Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba tweeted.

Due to the “lack of popular support”, such a referendum “will be fully organised”, he added.

“Tough sanctions against Russia must follow if they continue. Kherson is and always will be Ukraine,” the Minister added.

Kuleba drew a parallel with Russia’s annexation of the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea in 2014, when it held a referendum on joining Russia after deploying troops there.

Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a parade marking Victory Day in Sevastopol, Crimea, May 9, 2014. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev, File)

Kherson’s plan followed a “2014 playbook”, Kuleba said.

Ukrainian mediator Lyudmyla Denisova wrote on Telegram that Russian occupation forces were phoning lawmakers in the local legislature, asking them to vote for the plan.

Denisova said such a referendum would be illegal in the occupied territory, because under Ukrainian law any territorial issue can only be resolved by a national referendum.

Do you like The Times of Israel?

If so, we have a request.

Every day, our journalists aim to keep you up to date with the most important developments that deserve your attention. Millions of people rely on ToI for fast, fair and free coverage of Israel and the Jewish world.

We care about Israel – and we know you do too. So today we have a question: show your appreciation for our work by join the Times of Israel communityan exclusive group for readers like you who appreciate and financially support our work.

Yes, I will give Yes, I will give Already a member? Log in to stop seeing this

You are a dedicated reader

That’s why we started The Times of Israel ten years ago – to provide discerning readers like you with must-read coverage of Israel and the Jewish world.

So now we have a request. Unlike other media, we don’t have a paywall in place. But since the journalism we do is expensive, we invite readers to whom The Times of Israel has become important to help support our work by joining The Times of Israel community.

For just $6 a month, you can help support our quality journalism while benefiting from The Times of Israel WITHOUT ADVERTISINGas well as access Exclusive content only available to members of the Times of Israel community.

Thank you,
David Horovitz, founding editor of The Times of Israel

Join our community Join our community Already a member? Log in to stop seeing this


About Author

Comments are closed.