Hastily arranged polls in Russia-controlled regions have seen little campaigning, but there are increased reports of door-to-door searches and repression
With minimal preparation, armed soldiers standing guard and the booms of war often audible in the distance, so-called referendums got under way on Friday in areas of Ukraine occupied by Russian troops.
Residents in Russian-controlled parts of Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions were told to vote on proposals for the four areas to declare independence and then join Russia.
The polls have been widely condemned in Kyiv and the west as illegitimate, and appear to be a thin attempt to provide cover for the illegal annexation of the regions by Moscow. They were hastily organised after being announced earlier this week, and are due to run until Tuesday.