The Kremlin is growing dissatisfied with the governor of the temporarily occupied territories of Zaporizhzhia region, Yevhen Balytskyi. One of the main demands of the Kremlin to the occupation administrations in the TOT of Ukraine is the passportization of the entire local population, according to the Center for National Resistance.
The Russian government is not interested in methods, the main thing is numbers. However, the actual numbers of passports issued differ significantly from those reported by propagandists. In particular, in Zaporizhzhia, Gauleiter Balytsky cannot even fake support for the occupiers. The Russians are now actively preparing for their fake elections in September. At the same time, to simulate support, they held "primaries" in the temporarily occupied territories. And in the TOT of Zaporizhzhia, even according to the reports of the occupation administrations, only 1500 people took part in the elections. Most of them were Russians from the territory of the Russian Federation. This figure is overestimated by half, and even it looks insignificant given the number of people living in the TOT of the region.
But for now, Balytsky will remain in office, because it is important for the Kremlin to keep collaborators in allegedly senior positions in the occupation administrations. After all, this creates a propaganda picture that the local population allegedly supports the Russians and has gone over to their side. However, the Russian government continues to strengthen the role of its curators in the TOT to control the collaborators.
Sensing the danger of reducing his influence, Balytsky is increasingly spreading theses aimed at integrating the TOT of southern Ukraine into the Russian socio-economic space. In particular, according to Russian officials, Zaporizhzhia region should be integrated within the framework of the concept of "Russia's new Azov Sea region", which assigns the region the role of a recreational area and agro-industrial center.
This concept was presented during the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, which was attended by a group of collaborators led by Yevgeny Balytsky.
Author - Serhii Kolomiets, 18/06/2023