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Will Novorossiya Vote to join Russia in Autumn?

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August 25th, 2015

Alexander Chalenko for Politnavigator

translated by J Arnoldski

“Referendum on the the joining of Donbass to Russia will take
place in late autumn”

In late autumn, the integration of the two Novorossiya republics,
the DPR and LPR, into the structure of Russia will reach a qualitatively new
level: it is expected that after a month, after holding local elections to the
government of Novorossiya, a referendum will be carried out which will put
forth the question of the DPR and LPR joining the Russian Federation.

This was reported by a source close to Alexander Zakharchenko,
head of the Donetsk republic.

“It was previously
announced that local elections in the DPR will be held sometime in the
beginning of the second half of October, and in early November in the LPR. So
consider this. It turns out that the referendum is expected in the DPR in the
second half of November and in the LPR in early December.

True, elections have only
been declared but not scheduled. Kiev is not going to accept them, and
therefore there is no intent to make changes to the necessary laws on elections. There is a chance that the OSCE, which doesn’t know all of the cunning and tricks of Kiev, can recognize these elections, so they should be carried out. And they will be carried out.

So, the referendum will be
held a month following local elections,” the interviewee reported.

“I think that no one has
doubts about what kind of turnout and what kind of results will be for such a
referendum. Personally I assumed that more than 90% of citizens of the DPR and
LPR will vote for joining Russia.

I have had to repeatedly
write and say that the people of Donbass want neither an “independent” DPR and
LPR, nor an “independent” Novorossiya, but precisely the entry of these
historically Russian territories into the Russian Federation.

I cannot personally doubt
this, because during my trips to Donbass over a year, I repeatedly discussed
this with those who usually called common people, and they are primarily
interested in only one question which is the main one for them: when will
Russia take us in?

Donbass rose up in Spring,
2015 not only because it protested against the coup d’etat in February, 2014,
but also because it wanted a repetition of the Crimean scenario for itself. So
the mere presentation of such a question in a referendum will radically change
the mood and psychological state of people in Donbass, and more clearly
indicate the geopolitical perspective of Donbass and its geopolitical goal.

This will immediately give
even greater meaning to the struggle of the DPR and LPR. The referendum will
underline that such terrible sacrifices have not been in vain. After all,
hardly anyone, after what has happened over the past year, wants to return to
membership in Ukraine.

Thus, this referendum will
be a clear application of what the authorities of the DPR and LPR want, being
followed by the decision to grant residents of Donetsk and Lugansk Russian
passports, the establishment of economic cooperation by linking Novorossiya,
South Ossetia, and Russia, and the introduction of the Russian ruble as the
unit of payment.

Skeptics can argue with me
that there is not worth rejoicing. In 2006, Transnistria held a similar
referendum, and after that did it become part of Russia? No! So why expect
anything different from this referendum?!

Undoubtedly, there is a
grain of truth in such skepticism. But the fundamental difference is still
there: in contrast to Transnistria, Donbass has a common border with Russia. At
any given time during more or less favorable circumstances, Russia, as in the
case of Crimea, can give its go-ahead for reunification with the Donbas.

The carrying out of the
referendum, in such a view, will also be another blow to the Russian whiners
and others of the Strelkovist intelligentsia who continue to talk nonsense that
Moscow “is ditching Novorossiya.”

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