President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman told reporters on Thursday that a ceremony will be held in the Kremlin on Friday to sign agreements on the annexation of occupied Ukrainian territories to the Russian Federation.
Dmitry Peskov said the ceremony will take place at 3 p.m. local time (8 a.m. ET) on Friday.
Putin will give a speech to the pro-Russian leaders of the four occupied territories on the sidelines of the ceremony, he added.
separatist leaders from the Kherson and Zaporizhzia regions, and the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics All went to Moscow Following the release of election results.
The four territories, which make up 18% of Ukraine’s territory, recently held a Moscow-backed “referendum” to join Russia. These have been widely condemned as “injury” by Western leaders.
“Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporizhzhia, Kherson – Russia!” And giant video screens have been set up in Red Square, Reuters reported on Thursday.
Members of Russia’s lower house of parliament have also received invitations to Friday’s ceremony in the Kremlin, state news agency RIA Novosti reported, citing a post by Communist Party deputy Denis Burpionov on its Telegram channel.
Some context: The referendum “votes” on joining Russia held in the four occupied territories from Friday to Tuesday violated international law and Universally dismissed as “a fake”. By Western countries, including Ukraine and US President Joe Biden.
Cited figures in Luhansk, Donetsk, Kherson and Zaporizhzia ranged from 87.05% to claims of near-universal verdicts, although such figures are in stark contrast to reality. According to a CNN poll of Ukrainians in February, shortly before Russia’s invasion, no region in the country had more than one in five supporting Ukrainian unity with Russia.
CNN’s Joe Shelley reported for this post.