Russia has started pseudo-referendums in the temporarily occupied territories of Zaporizhzhya, Kherson, Luhansk and Donetsk Regions on their illegal accession to its territory, the State Border Guard Service reports on Telegram.
"Ukrainians will face punishment for voluntary participation in the so-called referendums in the temporarily occupied territories," - border guards reminded.
The resistance movement "Yellow Ribbon" called on the residents of the temporarily occupied territories not to open their doors to anyone from 23 to 28 September.
"We appeal to the residents of the temporarily occupied cities of Ukraine.
Today, the russians will be coming to your homes and trying to force you to take part in the fake referendum. We urge you not to open your doors in any case from 23 to 28 September. Fully ignore the referendum!" - the movement called.
Occupants are going to hold pseudo-referendums in the temporarily occupied parts of Zaporizhzhya, Kherson, Donetsk and Luhansk regions on joining russia from 23 to 28 September.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said that holding fake referendums in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine will not change anything. Ukraine will continue to liberate its land. Ukrainians should not participate in the occupiers' fake activities.
Head of the Presidential Office Andriy Yermak stressed after the first reports on the preparation of urgent pseudo-referendums that it indicates the fear of defeat.
According to the American ISW, Vladimir Putin seeks the annexation of the occupied territories to declare the counteroffensive of Ukrainian troops as an attack on the territory of the russian federation.
According to the US, Sergey Kiriyenko, the first deputy head of the russian presidential administration, is in charge of preparations for pseudo-referendums in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine. In late August, a State Department official noted that these fake referendums could take place in the coming weeks, but Ukraine, the United States and the international community know that no matter how many russian soldiers and puppet officials are brought in, the Kremlin will not be able to change the borders of sovereign Ukraine by force.
U.S. intelligence believes that russia was also preparing a "referendum" for Kharkiv Region, too, but at that time Ukrainian defenders had not yet launched a counteroffensive, which resulted in the liberation of a significant part of the territory.
In Donetsk Region, they are going to gather children aged 13-17 to increase attendance at the fake referendums, and in Luhansk Region people are forbidden to leave.