Kyrylo Stremousov, the top quisling of Russian-occupied Kherson Oblast, has claimed that the oblast is “ready” for a “referendum” on joining Russia but is putting the process on pause due to the “security situation,” the Russian state media agency TASS reported.
Russian officials have announced preparations for and then postponed sham “referendums” expected to formalize Russia’s occupation of Ukrainian territories on multiple occasions. The latest such date for the “referendum” in Kherson Oblast was 11 September.
Ukraine’s counteroffensive of the latest days, which includes cutting off Russian-occupied Kherson from reinforcements from Crimea by destroying bridges, is creating a sense of uncertainty for the Russians, according to Kherson journalist Kostiantyn Ryzhenko. The occupiers will be in an untenable position if they hold a referendum and soon afterward, Ukraine wins back Kherson. Therefore, any referendum-related actions are dependent on Ukraine’s military successes, he told.
As well, in Kherson Oblast, the massive partisan resistance is said to be creating problems for the organization of the illegitimate “plebiscite.”