Fake referendums undermine the legitimacy of Russian state altogether

The so-called “referendums” on joining Russia that the aggressor held in the occupied territories of Ukraine are illegitimate under Ukrainian, international, and even Russian law. Russia does not even control the whole regions it claims to have annexed, making the entire procedure merely a propaganda campaign for the internal audience.

The sham votes make no sense in terms of implementing the principle of international law, the right of nations and peoples to self-determination, as there are no peoples or nations in the occupied areas – they are simply parts of Ukraine’s regions. Considering the freedom of expression criterion, there is abundant evidence that residents were forced to vote at gunpoint. Overall, the pseudo-referendums violated almost all principles of freedom of expression and freedom of voting, making them void of any legal force whatsoever.

To bring to justice all those responsible for the illegal “referendums” and attempted annexation, a special tribunal needs to be established, the project of which is already being discussed by the international community.


  • Zakhar Tropin, Associate Professor of the International Law Department at the Institute of International Relations of Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv
  • Denys Dolynskyi, Lawyer of Lawyers’ Union “Azones”
  • Oleksandr Moshnyagul, Political Scientist

UKRAINE IN FLAMES project is created by Ukraine Crisis Media Center and NGO “Euroatlantic Course”. We are aiming at searching a loud support for Ukraine in the war started by Russia on the 24th of February 2022.

If you want to support Ukraine against Russian aggression, check the link with recommendations by Ukraine Crisis Media Center – https://uacrisis.org/en/help-ukraine.

NGO Euroatlantic Course collects donations to support Ukrainian Army and civilians – https://eac.org.ua/en/main-page/.

How you can help Ukraine against Russian aggression:

👉🏻 Come back alive – https://bit.ly/3Ct6O2L (works directly with the command and personnel of military units, purchasing infrared thermal imaging cameras, night vision goggles, hemostatics etc); 

👉🏻 CO Serhiy Prytula Charity Foundation – https://bit.ly/3Svas1G (purchases supplies for Ukrainian army, such as armor, ammunition, first-aid kits, cars and ATV, humanitarian aid for civilians, and food for animals);

👉🏻 UNITED 24 – https://bit.ly/3M2mXiT (was launched by the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy as the main venue for collecting charitable donations in support of Ukraine. Funds will be transferred to the official accounts of the National Bank of Ukraine and allocated by assigned ministries to cover the most pressing needs)

👉🏻 Army SOS – https://bit.ly/3UYK168 (manages purchases of necessary ammunition, shields, intercommunication and reconnaissance facilities, etc. and delivers all goods directly);

👉🏻 Vostok SOS – https://bit.ly/3Ruut75 (raising funds for various needs of the army);

👉🏻 Phoenix Wings – https://bit.ly/3RvWSd0 (the appropriate equipment & uniform, personal non-lethal protection (vests, helmets), required treatment of the wounded soldiers, and repair of the buildings used by the army).