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By annexing occupied Ukrainian territories Russia violated even its own laws, legal expert explains

Vladimir Putin has signed a decree on the accession of the Kherson Region, Zaporizhzhia, the “DPR”, and the “LPR” to Russia. The act of annexation was preceded by a four-day “referendum” organized by Russian authorities, which yielded the following results, if we were to believe state-owned Russian media: the share of those in favor ostensibly reached 99.23% in the “DPR”, 98.42% in the “LPR”, 87% in the Kherson Region, and 93.11% in Zaporizhzhia.

“I am confident that the Federal Assembly will support... the formation of four new constituents of the Russian Federation because such is the will of millions of people. ... It is out of avarice and the intention to maintain its limitless power that the collective West is waging a hybrid war against Russia. They do not want us to be free; they are not after equal cooperation but pillage. Our thinking, our philosophy presents an immediate threat to them. We are going to protect both our values and our homeland.

Western elites negate do not only negate national sovereignty and international law; their hegemony bears the vividly pronounced traits of totalitarianism, despotism, and apartheid. I’ll reiterate that one of the reasons for the many years of Russophobia, for the open malice of Western elites was that we refused to let them rob us in the period of colonial conquests, forcing Europeans onto the path of mutually beneficial trade. We achieved it by creating a powerful centralized state in Russia, which evolved and strengthened on the foundation of the great moral values of Orthodox Christianity, Islam, Judaism, and Buddhism.

The United States left a horrible scar in the memory of the peoples of Korea and Vietnam: barbarian carpet bombings, the use of napalm and chemical weapons. The de-facto American occupation of Germany, Japan, and the Republic of Korea is ongoing.

It is with its destructive policies, wars, and pillaging that the US has provoked the current colossal upsurge of migration flows. Millions of people are suffering hardship and humiliation, and thousands die while trying to get to Europe, among other places. Ukraine is being robbed of its grain as we speak.

... They are out of their minds. Do we want our schools to impose perversions on our children from an early age, perversions that lead to degradation and extinction? For them to hear that, apart from men and women, there are ostensibly some other genders and to be manipulated into considering sex reassignment surgery? None of this is acceptable to us. We have a different future – a future of our own,” Putin declared.

On a more important note, the law on the accession of new constituent entities to the Russian Federation stipulates that two referendums must be held – one in the relevant foreign country. Lawyer Elena Lukyanova, a constitutional law expert, pointed out the discrepancy to The Insider.

“Crimea was an autonomous republic, which is a slightly different status. They had a Constitution and certain powers. As questionable as the situation was, one could at least contemplate the idea that Crimea had indeed declared its independence. The law on the acceptance of a new constituent territory to the Russian Federation explicitly demands that, if the acceding territory forms part of a foreign state, two referendums must be held: in Russia and the foreign state (an independence referendum). This is also the reason why the ‘accession’ of Sevastopol to Russia was a gross violation: it was not part of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea.”

Lukyanova also explained that the Russian government had decided against following the procedure for annexing a part of a foreign state but the one for the accession of an independent state.

“They did not observe the right procedure. They simply couldn’t. They did the same as with Crimea. Granted, the ‘DPR’ and the ‘LPR’ claimed their independence long ago, but the Kherson Region and Zaporizhzhia were a slipshod job. It's a sham on a sham wrapped in another sham.”

According to the lawyer, in terms of international law, we witnessed an unambiguous annexation. Under the Ukrainian constitution, the status of its territories can only be changed through a referendum.

Before the accession treaties were signed, the Russian government recognized the Kherson Region's “independence” – even though its occupational authorities had not bothered to declare it. Putin signed a decree to that effect on September 29.

The signed treaties will now be presented to the Federation Council for ratification.

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