The Russian Federation will quickly annex the Kherson Region now that voting on the referendum to join Russia – dismissed as bogus by the West – is wrapping up, the head of the military-civilian administration of the region said Tuesday.
Voting began last week and ends Tuesday in Kherson, Zaporizhzhia, Luhansk and Donetsk regions. Russia is expected to claim victory in all four regions.
“The faster the institution of power begins to work, the easier it will be for people to live,” Vladimir Saldo said. “There will be a transition period, of course, until we teach our officials … the laws of the Russian Federation.
“There will be this period, but I expect that it will not last long,” he said.
Saldo said region residents who are receiving Russian passports will not be subject to conscription for Russian President Vladimir Putin’s controversial “partial” military mobilization. The Kremlin plan to call up 300,000 additional soldiers has fueled angry protests in Russia and prompted long lines at the Russian-Georgia border as people try to flee.
► More than 60 police officers raided a luxury yacht in northern Germany linked to Russian oligarch Alisher Usmanov, a close ally of President Vladimir Putin. Prosecutors said they are investigating alleged breaches of sanctions and money laundering rules.
►A mission of French specialists has arrived in Ukraine to help document Russian war crimes near Izium.
Russian Orthodox leader: Death in war ‘washes away all sins’
Patriarch Kirill, the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, told his followers that dying while carrying out military duty “washes away all sins.” Kirill preached support for mobilization in Russia, saying that this will help to “reconcile” Ukraine and Russia. Kirill is a Putin supporter who has fully supported the war. In May, Pope Francis urged Kirill not to justify the invasion.
“The patriarch cannot transform himself into Putin’s altar boy,” he said.
Contributing: The Associated Press