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As Putin intensifies nuclear threats, how world reacts to ‘pretend’ referendum is important: Jolie – NationalOUS News

As Russian President Vladimir Putin continues to pose nuclear threats, how the world reacts to a “false” referendum to be held in the coming days in Ukraine-occupied territories has no “fake legitimacy” to further steps. Removal would be crucial, warned Canada’s foreign minister.

Melanie Jolie spoke to reporters from New York on Thursday, where she is in meetings as part of Canada’s delegation to the United Nations General Assembly. So far, world leaders in the General Assembly have focused heavily on the global instability resulting from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, while laying the groundwork for pushback if Putin tries to annex Russian-controlled territories.

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‘We will never recognize them’: Trudeau condemns referendum to annex Ukraine regions

Claiming them as part of Russia, many fear, would provide a dangerous excuse for Putin to attempt to use strategic nuclear weapons to thwart continued Ukrainian counter-offensive.

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Jolie called the nuclear threats made by Putin “irresponsible” and “unthinkable” amid retaliation in recent days, but warned that “we cannot be naive” about the threats.

“We have to ensure that we work with colleagues on different scenarios. Now we know that Putin has been surrounded. He has surrounded and he is becoming more and more isolated,” she said.

“At the same time, we have to be very careful. We need to make sure that the international community will not legitimize the pretentious referendum that Putin is trying to do,” Jolly said.

“It’s fundamental because we want to make sure that Russia doesn’t have that spurious legitimacy as an argument that can be used in the context of this illegal and unfair war. That’s why we call it that – sham public opinion There are collections and we are uniting the international community to make sure this is seen as a matter of course.”

Jolie also said further sanctions against Russia were coming “very soon”, but did not support stopping Russians from obtaining visas. Many are currently attempting to flee the country as Putin gathers additional forces to support a struggling war effort.

He said Canada was continuing to work closely with other countries at the United Nations, aiming to prosecute Putin and Russia for crimes of aggression.

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Click to play video: 'We may be at a turning point': Freeland's remarks on Putin's nuclear threats

‘We may be at a turning point’: Freeland comments on Putin’s nuclear threats

‘We may be at a turning point’: Freeland comments on Putin’s nuclear threats

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also condemned on Wednesday the planned referendums, which are due to be held between September 23 and 27 by Russian-founded officials in the provinces of Luhansk, Donetsk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhya.

The regions represent about 15 percent of Ukrainian territory.

Click to play video: 'Fail and fail': Trudeau condemns Putin's latest nuclear threats, mobilization in Ukraine'

‘Feeling and failing’: Trudeau condemns Putin’s latest nuclear threats, mobilization in Ukraine

‘Feeling and failing’: Trudeau condemns Putin’s latest nuclear threats, mobilization in Ukraine

Trudeau has said Canada will never recognize the referendum results, which are widely seen as rigged. European officials have said the same thing.

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Meanwhile, Russian officials have intensified their rhetoric around the potential to use nuclear weapons and suggested that any attack on territory considered Russian would justify any and all forms of military force.

“Encroachment on Russian territory is a crime that allows you to use all the forces of self-defense,” former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said on social media.

Margarita Simonyan, editor-in-chief of the pro-Kremlin RT TV station, wrote: “A referendum today, recognition as part of the Russian Federation tomorrow, the day after tomorrow attacks on Russian territory become a full-fledged war between Ukraine and NATO and Russia, By all means are joining hands of Russia.”

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland offered a blunt assessment of the situation on Wednesday.

“I think we may be at a turning point in the illegal invasion of Russia,” she said.

“The next step is for the Russian people to understand that, from the point of view of Russia, this is a completely disastrous, pointless war. And we can’t get there sooner.”

—With files from The Associated Press.

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