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OSCE observers spot gunmen near 'polling stations' in occupied Donbas

Some local residents told the OSCE SMM representatives they were concerned about withholding payments and other consequences if they wouldn’t vote
20:00, 12 November 2018

Open source

Several people armed to the teeth stood next to 'polling stations' in occupied areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions on the day of so-called 'elections'. OSCE Special Monitoring Mission reported.

‘The mission team recorded a slight increase in the presence of the members of armed formations in some parts of the city center in uncontrolled by the Government Donetsk on November 11. The observers saw buildings with a sign saying 'polling stations', 2-4 people in full military gear and armed with guns stood outside of the buildings. The monitors saw counters nearby, which are usually used in markets,’ reads the message.

Related: 11 seconds per each voter: Occupied Donetsk set record of election speed?

According to the observers, Vodafone and Fenix mobile networks were out of order for some period of time.

‘Some local residents have been separately expressing concerns about that people felt that they have to “vote”, otherwise they can confront with withholding payments or the provision of health services in the areas outside the government control,’ reads the report of OSCE.

As is known, the so-called elections took place in the occupied territories of Donetsk and Luhansk regions on Sunday, November 11. The voters elected the leaders of 'people's republics' and their representatives in the parliaments of the 'republics'.

It was reported that Leonid Pasechnyk was chosen as the "head" of the self-proclaimed republic at the illegal "elections" in the separate parts of Luhansk regions (Luhansk People's Republic, LPR). Denis Pushilin was "elected" as the head of the territory of Donetsk region occupied by the pro-Russian militants (Donetsk People's Republic, DPR).

Related: Militants continue to play with numbers, - Ukraine's Security Service about Donbas elections

Ukraine, the U.S. and the EU unanimously condemned the voting, considering it illegitimate. Russia still has not commented on the outcome of the election.

Besides, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko urged Ukrainians living in the occupied Donbas not to vote at the fake elections on November 11. The EU has already condemned the "elections" in Donbas and urged Russia to influence the separatists supported by it.

Related: Putin's associate congratulates Pushilin, Pasechnyk on victory at Donbas elections

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