Lithuanian Protection Minister Arvydas Anusauskas believes that Russia will implement military legislation as soon as the current electoral referendum in the occupied Ukrainian territory ends.
“I think rumours about the introduction of military legislation in border areas, whether with Ukraine or elsewhere, are usually not just rumours,” Anusauskas said on Monday, according to Lithuanian Radio and Television. Anusauskas predicted, Military legislation will be in line with the vote, which began on Friday and is expected to end on Tuesday. Referendums are currently being held in the four regions of Luhansk, Donetsk, Kherson and Zaporozhye.
U.S. President Joe Biden and the European Union’s head of international reporting, Josep Borrell, expressed doubts about the legitimacy of the referendum, which Biden called a “sham” vote that violated the U.N. constitution.
“You go in. They have puppet governments, local governments. And then they do a vote, and they’re definitely going to rig it and try to declare Russian territory,” U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said throughout 60 minutes The interview aired on Sunday. “It’s not. It will never be recognized as such. Ukrainians have the right to accept it again.”
President Vladimir Putin ordered the mobilization of some 300,000 reservists last week, prompting violent reactions across Russia and surrounding regions, as well as protests in the country’s largest city.
Dozens of conscripted Russian men have tried to leave the country and face a potential penalty of 10 years in prison. Films have surfaced online showing drunk men being called to fight while others say goodbye to their families.
Attacks on Russian army recruitment facilities have also increased.
Russia will close its borders on Wednesday, barring men of conscription age from leaving the country, Russian media Meduza said, citing two Kremlin sources.
Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov denied on Monday that talks on military legislation were taking place at the highest stage of the presidency, according to Russian state information company TASS.
“I don’t know anything about it,” Peskov said, and the mobilization, including traffic, didn’t take into account either. “At the same time, no choice has been made.”
Putin’s mobilization order is unlikely to have the impact it should have, according to a report released on Sunday by the Institute for Conflict.
It referred to the choices made on September 21, which, while including more labor, would lead to inefficiencies and better prices for families, society and politics.
“As Russian President Vladimir Putin seeks to mobilize large numbers of Russians to fight in Ukraine, he is unlikely to overcome fundamental structural challenges,” the report said.
Information week Contact the Kremlin and the U.S. State Department for comment.
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