Kyiv said the 'sham' referendums were meaningless and vowed to 'eliminate' threats posed by Russia


  • Naryshkin claims Poland wants to annex the Ukrainian regions of Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk and Ternopil
  • He said Poland is already preparing to hold sham referendums in Ukrainian territories
  • A top Ukrainian official dismissed the claim as Russia's attempt at sowing discord between Poland and Ukraine

Poland is allegedly planning to annex Ukrainian territories and is already preparing to hold "referendums" in several areas, several Russian officials have claimed.

Sergey Naryshkin, the Director of the Foreign Intelligence Service of Russia, on Wednesday said Poland is looking to annex the Ukrainian regions of Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk and part of Ternopil, he told Kremlin-aligned news agency RIA Novosti, citing Russian intelligence.

Naryshkin said that Poland is already preparing to hold sham referendums in the Ukrainian regions. The Russian official also added that Poland believes it "deserves generous compensation for military aid and providing a roof over the refugees' heads."

In response to the claims, Mykhailo Podoliak, Deputy Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine, dismissed the allegations against Poland and claimed it is the Kremlin's attempt to "sow distrust between friends."

"Statements of RF speakers about "Poland's plans to annex western Ukraine" — another attempt of Kremlin to sow distrust between friends. Does anyone believe that it will work? Ukraine and Poland laugh at it. Together. There is only one country ignoring international law, we know its name," Podoliak wrote in a tweet.

Other Russian officials previously echoed Naryshkin's claim, including Dmitry Medvedev, Deputy Chairman of the Security Council of the Russian Federation; Maria Zakharova, spokesperson for the Foreign Ministry of Russia; Nikolai Patrushev, Secretary of the Security Council of the Russian Federation; and Russian President Vladimir Putin, as per Ukrainska Pravda.

Belarusian President and known Putin ally Alexander Lukashenko also made a similar claim in May during a meeting with Putin, as reported by Belarusian state media BELTA.

"There are some interesting things unexpectedly in Ukraine. You know this very well. It should worry us, and you too, that they (politicians) are already taking steps to dismember Ukraine," Lukashenko allegedly said in the meeting, according to state media. "We are worried that they are ready - the Poles, the Nato people - to go out, "help" in this way to take away western Ukraine, as it was before 1939."

Naryshkin's claim comes after the Polish government announced it will begin charging Ukrainian refugees for food and housing after staying for four months in state-provided accommodation, as per Reuters.

A girl walks her scooter past a crater after a Russian missile strike in a village near the western Ukrainian city of Lviv