G7 leaders denounced the “sham” Russian referenda held in occupied Ukraine as a “false” pretext for the illegal seizure of territory.

In statement On Friday night, a group of the richest nations said the votes held by Moscow were contrary to the United Nations Charter and international law and had no legitimacy.

Russia began on Friday asking people from the Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhia oblasts if they wanted to join Russia in an attempt to formalize the annexation of four areas. Self-proclaimed referenda will be held more than five days.

Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the US called on Russia to “blatantly intimidate the local population”, who “consistently resisted Russian efforts to redraw borders by force.” Armed soldiers go door to door to collect voices According to to media reports.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy on Friday denounced the votes initiated by Moscow as a “farce”. He also asked people in the occupied regions to hide from Russian mobilization “by any means” after Russian President Vladimir Putin announced earlier this week that 300,000 reservists would be called.

The referenda come as the United Nations He said on Friday that Russia committed war crimes in Ukraine, including b*mbings against civilian areas, summary ex*cutions, torture and s*xual violence, including against children. Investigators visited 27 Ukrainian towns and settlements and interviewed over 150 victims and witnesses.

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