Russia had planned to establish a puppet administration in Kyiv, stage a pseudo-referendum to declare the creation of a new "republic" and distribute Soviet-era passports, a new report indicates.
Blank passports with CCCP (an abbreviation for Russia) in gold leaf lettering stamped on red passports were discovered by Ukraine's Security Services in an abandoned house in Makariv of the Bucha district that Russia used as a makeshift storage facility.
The Soviet passports supposedly were going to be forcibly exchanged for Ukrainian identification before Moscow could create new Russian passports.
The passports were modeled from those used by the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, which declared independence from the Soviet Union when the latter disintegrated in 1991. All of the inscriptions in the passports were made in both Russian and Ukrainian.
"Such passports have not been produced in Ukraine since 1990, which means that all the found ones were imported to Makariv from Russia at the beginning of the full-scale war," read a post from the Security Services.
The discovery of the passports will reinforce the belief among some that the recreation of the Soviet Union was and still is one of Russian President Vladimir Putin's goals in the invasion of its eastern neighbor which began Feb. 24.
Other incidents include the self-declared pro-Russian "people's republics" along the border between Russia and Ukraine, some of which are at least partially occupied since the start of the invasion, have re-erected statues to the Soviet Union founder Vladimir Lenin in their downtown areas.
The towns of Nova Kakhovka and Genichesk are two which have done so.
The statues of Lenin were removed from Genichesk and Nova Kakhovka in 2015 in a Ukraine-wide push to rid the country of its Soviet past.
Yuriy Sobolevsky, the deputy governor of the Kherson region, said the efforts are part of a broader Russian strategy.
"Russians are trying to trigger some nostalgia for the Soviet Union in our residents. But no one is nostalgic. Our people live in the here and now," Sobolevsky said.
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