The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine expresses its resolute protest over the illegitimate and unlawful actions by Russia in connection with sham “elections” held today in the temporarily occupied territories of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Ukraine.
The current attempt by Russia to justify, organize and then legitimize a fake “voting” process in the occupied Donbas represents a flagrant violation of norms and principles of international law and Ukrainian legislation and constitutes a blatant breach of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.
At the same time, Russia as a party to the armed conflict in Donbas and a signatory of the Minsk agreements again violated its commitments thereunder.
We reaffirm that the results of these sham “elections” will be null and void, have no legal consequences, and will not be recognized by either Ukraine or the international community. The only elections that can be legally held in Donbas are elections conducted in full compliance with Ukrainian legislation and OSCE standards under OSCE/ODIHR monitoring.
We are grateful to our international partners for having reaffirmed their continued support for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders.
It is abhorrent that Russia has chosen to ignore the clear condemnation of the international community and its call to cancel the fake “elections”. Russia bears full responsibility for holding these illegal actions and for their devastating effect on the peace process.
We call on the international community to respond by stepping up political and economic pressure on the Kremlin and imposing new sanctions on the occupying state and those individuals, who were directly involved in organizing these sham “elections”.