Preliminary election results in the Donbas confirmed the victory of the favorites. In the Donetsk People’s Republic after counting 76.43% of the ballots, Denis Pushilin is gaining 61.5% of the vote, and his public movement “Donetsk Republic” is 76.1%.
In the Luhansk People’s Republic, after counting 63% of the ballots, Leonid Pasechnik leads with 68.92% of the votes and his movement “Peace to the Luhansk Region” with 74.28% of the votes.
Little-known rivals of Pushilin and Pasechnik did not give any surprises. They get support from 6.1% to 16.35%.
Note that the voter turnout in both republics was very high – 80.1% in the DNR and 77% in the LPR, which is comparable to the turnout for the 2014 referendums on self-determination of the republics.
Thanks to an organized procedure for exit voting, the military in the LNR voted directly on the front line in the trenches.
A selection of photos from polling stations was published on his blog by the expert Boris Rozhin. They clearly show how many people came to vote.
93 international observers from two dozen countries in Europe, America and Russia monitored elections in the DNR and LNR. Some of them visited the site of the death of the first head of the DNR, Alexander Zakharchenko.
“The elections that I saw here are generally democratic and very transparent,” said Belgian observer Frank Kreielman.
However, it was not without provocations. Thus, the employees of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the DNR stopped the attempt to attack members of the election commission during the exit voting, and in the LNR several false reports were received about mining sites.
In addition, 20 minutes before the opening of the polling stations of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the Dolomitnoye village in the north of Gorlovka was shelled. In the LNR, at that time, they were waiting for provocations by sabotage and reconnaissance groups, which had been transferred to the contact line in advance.
The reaction of Kiev to vote left a feeling of powerlessness. The SBU opened a criminal case on the fact of the elections and asked the Foreign Ministry of Ukraine to send notes of protest to those countries whose observers were present at the elections.
The reaction of the western allies of Kiev was predictable. Representatives of NATO and the European Union were quick to declare their unwillingness to recognize the results of the vote. They were also “condemned” by the leaders of Germany and France, who believe that the elections undermine the sovereignty of Ukraine.
The arguments of the West – voting in the people’s republics contradicts the Minsk agreements. Meanwhile, the Minsk-2 regulates only the municipal elections in the Donbass, and the elections of the heads and parliaments of the DNR and the LNR are not.
The concern of the opponents of Russia is understandable. “Donbass today is the center of world politics. Everything that happens here will have very big consequences for the USA, Russia, and, especially, with regard to the European crisis, ”said one of the observers, Italian journalist Giulietto Ciesa.
“This is a victory for the whole republic. We have proved that we are an accomplished state that the whole world will have to reckon with, ”Denis Pushilin quotes TASS. “We have proved that we can not only fight, but build a state according to democratic principles.”
Beekeeper’s statement was more political. “In 2014, we determined our path, chose our fate. We decided that we would build our republic in the Russian world, with Russia in our hearts, ”the politician emphasized.
The eyewitness told us about their impressions of the election process in the DNR, it was Russian writer and journalist Natalia Makeeva.
– On the voting day, November 11, 2018, I visited two polling stations in Donetsk – in the very center on Pushkin Boulevard and on the outskirts, in Petrovsky district, one – in Gorlovka and one more – almost on the contact line in Zaitsevo. I did not see anything like violations.
– According to the CEC of DNR turnout exceeded the rate of the referendum in 2014 …
- The turnout is difficult to judge, but at the polling stations were quite crowded. Local authorities everywhere, except for Zaitsevo, organized fairs, a lottery, music sounded, animators were engaged with children. In Zaitsevo, of course, the atmosphere is different, there is less than a kilometer to the enemy … By the way, in the evening, when the counting of votes began, the village was shelled at the Ukrovoisk.
– What will this election give?
– Passed in the presence of foreign observers, these elections, it seems to me, strengthen the statehood of the DNR, and therefore make the possibility of the occupation of the territory of Ukraine all the less likely.
In the future, it seems to me, it is necessary to strengthen the line “farther from Ukraine – closer to the Russian Federation”. The stronger the blow in the DNR and in the LNR, and, in general, the “north wind” throughout Eurasia, the better. In the first place – for the “northern wind “. The current expectations of the residents of Donbass told us a resident of Lugansk, a participant in the Russian spring in 2014, Yuri Chepurnov.
– During the existence of the LNR, this is my third visit to the polling station. And on the May 11 referendum (school No. 7, where the station was, the artillery of the Ukrainian Armed Forces smashed it in the summer of 2014) and on the elections on November 2, 2014 (I stood in a queue for more than 3 hours), believing that these were formal stages that made it possible RF recognize us. And then, after the referendum, to include in the Russian Federation on the Crimean variant … In the years since 2014, the faith that was then left traces, like traces of melting snow in spring. Therefore, in these elections, my arrival at the polling station is rather an answer to the collective West and its protectorate in the face of Kiev, who are trying to dictate their terms to us, saying that the elections do not recognize that those who go to vote will be thrown behind bars. Poroshenko’s election said that “Elections are held under the Russian machine -guns in the occupied territory.” What nonsense! The elections were held in a calm atmosphere in the territory, which in the spring of 2014 was freed from the occupation of the “independent Ukraine”. Yes, there was not a full-house on the polling stations in Lugansk, which was in 2014. But people always came up. Different ages. A lot of young people. It no longer associates itself with Ukraine, many people have LNR passports.
- Still, not all went to vote? ..
– You can understand that part of pensioners who travel to Ukraine for pensions and fears that they may be arrested for participating in elections when they go on pension matters. Of course, some of them did not dare to vote. Of course, some of the voters did not go to vote simply because the illusions of the possibility of the “Crimean option”, which were in 2014, collapsed.
– But you still went …
– For me personally, this election is the last “trust”. No, not Russia, the attitude towards which has not changed (this is my Motherland), but to politicians. Will they have enough will to finally recognize our republics, to eliminate the suspense state in which the people of the LNR-DNR are for the fifth year? ..