MOSCOW, August 9. /TASS/. The authorities of the Zaporozhye Region believe that as the day of the referendum on joining Russia draws near, Kiev’s forces will be shelling the region more often, a member of the chief council of the region’s military-civilian administration, Vladimir Rogov, TASS on Tuesday.
"The regime of [Ukrainian President Vladimir] Zelensky will definitely stage military provocations. We expect more bombardments, more attempts at counterattacks, and more strikes on the liberated territories. There have been far more shellings than even in March. Before, only Tochka-U missiles were flying in. Now the HIMARS rockets pound us very strongly. There are no doubts anymore that there will be attempts at provocations and shellings and an offensive by the Zelensky regime [as the referendum day draws near], " Rogov said.
Kiev, he continued, said at the highest level that it would stop at nothing to disrupt the referendum. In particular, their number one task is "to do everything to make the people leave the territory and to say afterwards that there was no turnout at the referendum," Rogov said.
"Nevertheless, as we can see, no matter how many threats are heard from the Zelensky regime, they will not succeed. Zelensky’s army and militants are trained only for defense and for stabs in the back. Direct confrontation is not for them. This is so because completely different worldviews and attitudes to life are cultivated on the other side," Rogov emphasized.
On Monday, the head of the region's military-civilian administration, Yevgeny Balitsky, told the We Are with Russia forum he had signed an order to hold a referendum on the issue of the region’s accession to Russia. At the moment, about 72-73% of the Zaporozhye Region has been liberated. Kiev’s army still controls the capital city Zaporozhye, which accounts for almost half of the region’s population. The function of the regional center is temporarily performed by Melitopol.