Referendums in Ukraine

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From September 23rd of this year to September 27th, the Ukrainian citizens living in Russian occupied oblasts were given an opportunity to vote on a referendum deciding whether or not to become part of Russia. Although Putin allowed 15% of Ukraine to come under the jurisdiction of Russia, western countries and Ukraine denounced the referendums as illegitimate. The question is: what actually happened?

Four oblasts, including Luhansk, Donetsk, Zaporizhzhia, and Kherson in Ukraine held referendums on whether or not to join the Russian Federation. With their accession they created a landbridge from the Russian homeland to the Crimean peninsula which was occupied by Russian forces in 2014.

While Russian forces don’t control all areas in any oblast that voted on ascension, in the eyes of Russia these areas voted and joined the country legitimately. Therefore, any Ukrainian counter offensive in these oblasts could be seen as an attack on Russia itself. Only time will tell what will happen next in this region of eastern Europe.