Human Rights Watch | Defending Human Rights Worldwide

A Russian officer guards a polling station in the city of Luhansk, Ukraine, which is occupied by Russia.

Fictitious Annexation Follows 'Voting' at Gunpoint

Vladimir Putin has just signed a document claiming to annex four Russia-occupied Ukrainian territories in Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporizhzhia and Kherson regions. Days before, Russia purported to hold “referendums” in these areas, with hastily staged “voting,” in some cases at gunpoint.

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