Scholz: Will not accept sham referendums in eastern Ukraine

Chancellor Olaf Scholz accused Russia of “blatant imperialism” at the United Nations.PICTURED: REUTERS/AMR ALFIKY

Ukraine blog

09/20/2022, 14:0809/20/2022, 19:36

Anna von Stefenelli
Jannik Sauer

More than six months after the start of the Russian war of aggression in the Ukraine Kyiv was able to recapture large areas in the east and south in a major counter-offensive. Ukrainian troops have the situation in the liberated areas in the Kharkov region firmly under control, emphasized Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Meanwhile, Ukraine wants to bring its complaint against the Russian war of aggression to the UN.

September 20th

5:11 p.m .: According to Scholz, sham referendums in eastern Ukraine are not accepted

Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) approved the planned votes in the eastern Ukrainian regions of Donetsk and Luhansk on accession Russia declared illegal under international law. It was “very, very clear that these sham referendums cannot be accepted, that they are not covered by international law and by the understandings that the world community has reached,” he said on Tuesday on the fringes of the UN General Assembly in New York.

The pro-Russian leadership in the occupied territories, here the head of the separatist parliament in Luhansk, Denis Miroshnichenko, is planning mock referendums.

The pro-Russian leadership in the occupied territories, here the head of the separatist parliament in Luhansk, Denis Miroshnichenko, is planning mock referendums. Image: IMAGO/ITAR-TASS

4:44 p.m .: Scholz accuses Putin of “blatant imperialism”.

At the United Nations, Chancellor Olaf Scholz accused Russia of “blatant imperialism” and added further support to Ukraine weapons assured. “Putin will only give up his war and his imperial ambitions when he realizes: he cannot win this war”, said Scholz on Tuesday evening (local time) according to a previously published speech before the UN General Assembly in New York. “Not only is he destroying Ukraine, he is also ruining his own country.”

In his first speech to the UN, Scholz also advocated harsh punishment for Russian war crimes. “We have to look and act when Russia commits war crimes in Mariupol, Bucha or Irpin. We will hold the murderers accountable.” Germany support the International Criminal Court and the Independent Commission of Inquiry set up by the Human Rights Council with all his might.

Russian President Vladimir Putin recognizes parts of Ukraine as Russian territory.

Russian President Vladimir Putin recognizes parts of Ukraine as Russian territory.Image: Pool Sputnik Kremlin / Konstantin Zavrazhin

3:50 p.m .: Four regions announce referendums on annexation to Russia

Pro-Russian separatist leaders in the contested Luhansk and Donetsk regions of eastern Ukraine have set the dates for their contentious referendums on accession to Russia. The voting will be held simultaneously from September 23 to 27, the separatists said on Tuesday, according to the Interfax news agency. The referendums are seen as a reaction to the current Ukrainian counter-offensive in the east of the country.

At the same time as the self-proclaimed People’s Republics, the contested Cherson region in the south and the Zaporizhia region, in which the contested nuclear power plant is located, also want to have a vote on joining Russia.

The Zaporizhia nuclear power plant is currently under Russian control.

The Zaporizhia nuclear power plant is currently under Russian control.Image: AP

7.16 a.m .: Ukraine brings its lawsuit to the UN

Ukraine is taking its complaint about the Russian war of aggression to the highest stage of world public opinion, in front of the United Nations General Assembly. It is an important day and he is preparing his subsequent speech via video link, said President Volodymyr Zelenskyj about the start of the UN general debate in New York on Tuesday. “There will be important signals from our state,” he announced in a speech distributed from Kyiv on Monday evening.

The Ukrainian head of state is scheduled to speak on Wednesday – exceptionally via video link instead of at the lectern of the General Assembly. Russia had tried to only allow Zelenskyj to speak in the foreseeable, unlikely event that he would have come to New York in person. The member states rejected this condition with a majority, so that the Ukrainian head of state is now involved.

6.07 a.m .: Selenskyj with his military: Fast action is necessary

After consulting with his military officials, Zelenskyy said that the Ukrainian forces had a firm grip on the situation in the liberated areas near Kharkiv in the east. He thanked individual army brigades, but also the SBU secret service, whose leadership he replaced in July. In the meantime, the SBU is making sure “that the occupying forces have nowhere to stay on Ukrainian soil.”

Many areas in the Kharkiv region are now back in Ukrainian and.

Many areas in the Kharkiv region are now back in Ukrainian and. Image: SOPA Images via ZUMA Press Wire / Oleksii Chumachenko

At the same time, the head of state called for quick action: Speed ​​is important in stabilizing the liberated regions, normalizing life there and advancing troops. Support from abroad must also keep up with this pace, he demanded.

5.33 a.m .: Separatists want rapid accession to Russia

With Ukrainian troops advancing in the east, Moscow’s governors in the separatist regions of Luhansk and Donetsk are pushing ahead with a campaign for rapid accession to Russia. In the People’s Republic of Luhansk, a so-called civil chamber appealed to the local leadership to hold a referendum on the annexation soon. A little later, in the People’s Republic of Donetsk, the Citizens’ Chamber followed with the same request, as reported by the Russian news agency Tass. The people in the Cherson region are also demanding a referendum, said the head of administration Kirill Stremoussov, appointed by Russia.

You can find older news about the war in Ukraine here.

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