EU and 55 countries sign joint statement condemning Russia’s election in occupied territories of Ukraine

On March 15, 55 countries and the European Union condemned the “presidential elections” organized by Russia in the occupied territories of Ukraine. This was reported by Ukraine’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations.

Among the signatory countries are Ukraine, Albania, Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Liberia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Marshall Islands, Monaco, Montenegro, Netherlands, New Zealand, North Macedonia, Norway, Palau, Paraguay, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States of America, Uruguay, and the European Union.

“We strongly condemn the Russian Federation’s illegitimate attempts to organize presidential elections in the temporarily occupied territories of the internationally recognized territory of Ukraine. Holding elections on the territory of another UN member state without its consent is a clear disrespect for the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity. Such elections are not valid under international law,” the statement said.

The countries called on all states, international organizations, and specialized agencies of the United Nations not to recognize any changes by the Russian Federation in the status of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol, as well as any or all of the Donetsk, Kherson, Luhansk, or Zaporizhzhia regions of Ukraine, and to refrain from any action or agreement that could be construed as recognizing any such changed status.

“We demand that the Russian Federation refrain from holding illegitimate elections in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine. We reiterate the call of the General Assembly on the Russian Federation to end its aggressive war against Ukraine and to withdraw immediately, fully, and unconditionally all its military forces from Ukraine’s territory within its internationally recognized borders,” the signatories emphasized.

They reaffirmed their support for the independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity of Ukraine within its internationally recognized borders, which also extend to its territorial waters.

Ukraine called on the international community not to send observers to the temporarily occupied territories and on the media not to call the fake expression of will an election. The Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs emphasizes that holding “elections” for the President of the Russian Federation in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine is illegal and will have no legal consequences.

On December 8, 2023, Russian dictator Vladimir Putin announced his intention to run for the presidency of Russia in 2024. The “elections” are multi-day events that take place, among other places, in Russian-occupied territories of Ukraine.

From March 11 to 15, early voting for the Russian president takes place in the occupied territories of the Luhansk region, intended for residents of communities remote from the polling stations.

On March 15, European Council President Charles Michel “congratulated” Russian president Vladimir Putin in advance of his victory in this year’s so-called elections.

The UK’s representative to the OSCE, the UN Secretary General, and the UN Security Council condemned Putin’s fake elections in the Russian-occupied territories of Ukraine, calling them illegal.

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