Russian President Vladimir Putin announced the partial mobilization of the reserve forces.
In a speech addressed to the Russian people, Putin confirmed that the mobilization procedures in Russia will start from September 21: “We are talking about partial mobilization. That is, the citizens who are currently in the reserves, and, above all, those who served in the armed forces, have certain military specialties and experience relevant, they will be subject to military service. Those called up for military service will undergo additional military training, taking into account the experience of special military operation, before being sent to units.”
Addressing the Russians, Putin also said, “We will support the decision on their future, which will be taken by the majority of the population of the republics of the People’s Republics of Donetsk, Lugansk, Zaporozhye and Kherson.”
On September 19, the public chambers of the Donetsk and Lugansk republics appealed to the presidents of the two republics, Denis Pushlin and Leonid Bashnik, for an initiative to immediately hold referendums on joining Russia. The next day, the authorities of the two republics announced that the referendum would be held from 23 to 27 September.