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The regional council in the occupied city of Kherson has voted to adopt a resolution affirming that the city remains Ukrainian, local officials have said.
The vote comes amid accusations by Ukrainian officials that Russian is planning a “pseudo” referendum on creating a breakaway “people's republic”.
Yuriy Sobolevskyi, the deputy head of the council, said in a Instagram post that members of the body “accepted the appeal that Kherson region is Ukraine” by 44 votes.
He wrote that deputies could “never recognise attempts to create a ‘people's republic' in the Kherson region and seize part of Ukraine”.
“Kherson region was, is and will be an integral part of a single state – Ukraine,” he added.
Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba tweeted earlier on Saturday that “Russians [are] now desperately try to organise a sham ‘referendum' for a fake ‘people's republic' in Kherson”.
“Severe sanctions against Russia must follow if they proceed. Kherson is and will always be Ukraine,” he wrote.