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SBU charges 11 suspected organizers of sham ‘referendum’ in occupied Zaporizhzhia Oblast

Kyiv Independent logo Kyiv Independent 11/19/2022 Kyiv Independent

Ukraine’s Security Service, SBU, identified 11 suspected Russian collaborators who allegedly participated in the organization of Russia's sham "referendum" in the occupied Zaporizhzhia Oblast. They allegedly organized a campaign in the occupied Ukrainian cities in support of the sham referendum and urged people to participate in it.

SBU didn't say whether the suspects were in custody or charged in absentia, but the cities where they were supposedly active in remain occupied by Russia.

Before, SBU has already charged with treason 26 other suspected organizers of the "referendum."

All charged with collaborationism were members of Russian-created "territorial election commissions" in the occupied cities of Enerhodar, Melitopol, and Kamianka-Dniprovska. Four of them were leading the "commissions," according to the SBU.

The investigation is ongoing, the SBU said.

In an attempt to solidify Russia's territorial gains in the invasion amid Ukraine's counteroffensive, Russian dictator Vladimir Putin claimed that Russia was annexing Ukraine's Zaporizhzhia, Donetsk, Luhansk, and Kherson oblasts during a ceremony in the Kremlin on Sept. 30. Russia only partly occupies the four oblasts, and controls the regional centers in just two of them.

On Nov. 19, the State Investigations Bureau said that it found a list of alleged Russian collaborators left by the Russian forces in the recently liberated Kherson.

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