Putin humiliated as defiant Ukrainians sabotage Russian propaganda film in captured city

Ukrainian mass protest ruins Putin's 'propaganda film' plans

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Vladimir Putin’s plans to film a propaganda film in a seized Ukrainian city have badly backfired for the Russian leader. Russia seized the Ukrainian city of Kherson earlier this week, becoming the first major city to succumb to Russian occupation. However, a surprise protest erupted on Saturday as more than 2,000 residents took to the streets to shout patriotic slogans including “Russians go home” and “Kherson is Ukraine”.

Videos on social media showed Russian troops firing into the air to deter the approaching crowd.

The protest scuppered a planned Russian propaganda film in the central square of Kherson.

Russia had sent busloads of actors into the city as they planned to stage a film where locals celebrated “their liberation” by Russian forces.

Ahead of the protest, CNN’s Nick Paton Walsh revealed the plans for the propaganda film: “We are hearing from residents in Kherson about a convoy that has moved into the town.”

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He continued: “There are civilian and humanitarian trucks parked in the central square, big white trucks, that will hand out humanitarian aid there.

“Officials have warned about a movie being made there, we have seen this kind of movie before in Crimea and Donbas.

“They send in people to fake support the change in government, that is what local officials are warning of.

“The Russians wants to give off this notion of popular support for the Russian occupation.”

However, posts shared on social media claim: “The fake Ukrainians were so badly outnumbered by the real Ukrainians that it spoiled the propaganda movie that was intended to show the world how grateful Kherson was to be liberated.”

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Yulia, a resident of Kherson, Ukraine, said: “They brought their actors from the Crimea to make a movie about their claim that we want to be part of the Russian Federation.”

User @Ukrayina1 tweeted about the film shoot’s preparation: “In Kherson, the occupiers brought in a ‘humanitarian aid’ and are going to make a movie about the junta and Kherson liberated from it.”

Another Twitter user @humilevskyi added: “Today 100 cars of people from Crimea were brought to Kherson, they will shoot a movie about how civilians meet Russian soldiers for the Russian media. If you see a video of Ukrainians greeting Russians, it’s a fake.”

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According to The Telegraph, the Crimean-based actors “cheered and cried as they pretended to be locals welcoming Russian troops pouring into the city”.

Vita Bondarenko, a 26-year-old project manager, told The Telegraph: “They are trying to show a picture of how they saved the city from hunger and that the Ukrainian government makes people starve.

“They want to film that Kherson wants independence, that we want to go to Russia, that they save us and we are happy about it. It is all a lie.

“This is not the case – we are not participating in this rally. They organised it themselves and are joining in on our behalf.”

This comes as Russian forces continue to shell the Ukrainian city of Mariupol on Saturday, despite agreeing to a ceasefire just hours earlier. 

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