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Farsala said:

Kherson is of great concern due to the upcoming referendum, it would be a huge blow to Russia's plan/ integrity if the Ukrainians took back Kherson.

From what I’ve read, the referendum plan and been ditched and the occupation forces plan to just outright announced annexation. Not that a referendum would have had a shred of credibility anyway with an ongoing war and reportedly 40% of residents having fled the city. And then there’s the obviously bias of the Russian occupation forces.