Written by 7:23 am European Union

Russia-Ukraine updates: EU slams ′falsified outcome′ of sham votes in Ukraine | News | DW

The European Union on Wednesday criticized the “illegal” annexation votes Russia held in four occupied regions of Ukraine and their “falsified” results, the bloc’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said.

“EU denounces holding of illegal ‘referenda’ and their falsified outcome,” Borrell wrote on Twitter.

“This is another violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, amidst systematic abuses of human rights,” he said.

Meanwhile, European Council President Charles Michel also tweeted: “Sham referenda. Sham results. We recognize neither.”

On Tuesday, the EU spokesman Peter Stano announced the bloc would slap sanctions on organisers of the “illegal” vote.
Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February, the EU has implements six rounds of sanctions targeting Russian individuals, entities, good exports and technology and banking as well as an embargo on most Russian oil and coal exports.

Here’s a roundup of other news from or concerning the war in Ukraine on September 28.

Sham votes in Russia-held Ukrainian regions are ‘fiction’ — Hug

The so-called “referendums” held over last few days in the occupied regions of Ukraine were “a work of fiction,” Alexander Hug, the former principal deputy chief monitor of the OSCE special monitoring mission to Ukraine, told DW.

“And a very obscene fiction that is in which viewers are invited to suppose that victims of atrocities committed by the Russian armed forces might side with the perpetrators of them,” he said.

According to Hug, the script for what happened and what will happen in occupied Ukrainian regions has been written a long time ago.

“What happened in 2014 [annexation of Crimea and Russian interference in Donbas] was probably the precursor of what we now may see to be unfold in these four areas,” he said.

However, Hug emphasized that Ukraine has all the right to defend its territory. “That remains its territory after these illegal actions that Russia took,” he said.

Ukraine urges ‘significant’ military aid boost after annexation votes

Ukraine called on the West to “significantly” increase its military aid to Ukraine after pro-Kremlin authorities in four Moscow-held regions of Ukraine declared victory in annexation votes

“Ukraine calls on the EU, NATO and the Group of Seven to immediately and significantly increase pressure on Russia, including by imposing tough sanctions and significantly increase their military aid to Ukraine,” Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

The statement also said that Russian-staged votes in four Ukrainian regions on becoming part of Russia were “null and worthless”, and that Ukraine would press on with efforts to liberate Ukrainian territory occupied by Russian forces.

Ukrainian Foreign Ministry said that Ukraine “will never agree to any ultimatums.”

EU vows retaliation if Nord Stream pipelines damage is sabotage

The European Union believes sabotage is the likely cause of leaks from the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines and is threatening countermeasures, its top diplomat Josep Borrell said on behalf of all member states.

“The European Union is deeply concerned about damage to the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines that has resulted in leaks in the international waters of the Baltic Sea,” Borrell said in a statement. “These incidents are not a coincidence and affect us all.”

According to Borrell, all of the available information indicated that the leaks were the result of a deliberate act. “We will support any investigation aimed at getting full clarity on what happened and why, and will take further steps to increase our resilience in energy security,” he said.

Borrell said that any deliberate disruption of European energy infrastructure is utterly unacceptable and would be met with a “robust and united response.”

Canada to impose new sanctions on Russia over ‘sham’ referendums

Canada will impose new sanctions over Russia’s “sham” referendums in four occupied regions of Ukraine, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said.

Trudeau said Canada would never recognize the results of the referendums or Russia’s attempted illegal annexation of Ukrainian territories.

“We intend to impose new sanctions against persons and entities that are complicit in this latest attempt to undermine the principles of state sovereignty, and that share responsibility for the ongoing senseless bloodshed across Ukraine,” Trudeau said in a statement.

More Ukraine-related content on DW

The US and NATO condemned Kremlin-staged “referendums” in eastern Ukraine as voting concluded.

Germany’s population has hit a record high of more than 84 million people this year, driven mainly by an influx of Ukrainian refugees.

dh/sms (Reuters, AP, AFP, dpa)

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