Tag Archives: crimea referendum

Vladimir Putin signs treaty to annex Crimea

“They (The West) cheated us again and again, made decisions behind our back, presenting us with completed facts. That’s the way it was with the expansion of NATO in the east, with the deployment of military infrastructure at our borders. They always told us the same thing: ‘Well, this doesn’t involve you.’ ”

Russian President Vladimir Putin signing a treaty to annex Crimea from Ukraine


[The New York Times] U.S. and Europe Step Up Sanctions on…

[The New York Times] U.S. and Europe Step Up Sanctions on Russian Officials

President Obama signed an executive order freezing the assets and banning visas for Russians deemed to be responsible for the seizing of Crimea or otherwise interfering in Ukrainian sovereignty. Among those targeted were several top aides or allies of President Vladimir V. Putin, and the White House threatened to go after more if Russia did not back down.

Among those penalized on Monday were Vladislav Surkov, for years one of Mr. Putin’s most influential advisers, known as the Kremlin’s “gray cardinal”; Sergei Glazyev, an economist who has been advising Mr. Putin on Ukraine; Valentina Matviyenko, chairman of the Federation Council, the upper house of Parliament; and Dmitry Rogozin, a deputy prime minister. No sanctions were placed on Mr. Putin.

Others named by the White House were Leonid Slutsky and Yelena Mizulina, members of the State Duma, the lower house of Parliament; and Andrey Klishas, a member of the Federation Council who wrote a bill to seize assets of Western individuals and assets in retaliation for any sanctions imposed on Russia.

The White House also sanctioned two Russian-supported figures who have taken power in Crimea — Sergei Aksyonov, the newly declared prime minister; and Vladimir Konstantinov, the newly declared speaker of its Parliament. It also targeted Viktor F. Yanukovych, the pro-Russian Ukrainian president deposed in February; and Viktor Medvedchuk, head of a pro-Russian civil society group, Ukrainian Choice.

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(Photo: Gabriella Demczuk/The New York Times)

See Also:

[Reuters] EU sanctions list includes Russian commanders, Crimea PM

[The New York Times] Obama’s Statement on New Sanctions Against Russia

[Yahoo! News/AFP] Tatars stay away in Bakhchysaray as…

[Yahoo! News/AFP] Tatars stay away in Bakhchysaray as pro-Russians vote en masse

In Bakhchysaray, the main centre of Crimea’s native Muslim Tatar community, Russian-speakers are the only people turning up at the polls on Sunday, as Tatars have decided to boycott the referendum.

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(Photo: AFP Photo/Dimitar Dilkoff)

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[Euronews] Crimean Tatars boycott vote as pro-Russians prepare for victory

[Al-Jazeera] Crimea crisis: The Tatarstan factor

The Crimean Tatars’ anti-Russian (hence in this context, pro-European) stance was forged by their 1944 deportation to Central Asia and problematic resettlement in their ancestral homeland. They are suspicious of Russian intentions and politically mobilised under the leadership of the Crimean Tatar Majlis. The official justification for Russia’s actions in Ukraine was supposedly their concern for minority groups – specifically, though not limited to, Crimean Russians. Given their mistrust and fears of repeated persecution, the Kremlin is approaching the Crimean Tatar community cautiously, with a little help from its friends, such as Shaimiev.

[BBC News] Live: Crimea votes in referendum What does the…

[BBC News] Live: Crimea votes in referendum

What does the ballot paper look like? A copy released by the Crimean parliament appears to give voters two choices – to rejoin Russia or stay with Ukraine but with greater autonomy. Take an interactive look at the ballot paper here.

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Gunmen Storm Crimea Hotel Full of Reporters on Eve of Referendum


Crimea’s police force said it was a training operation. The office of its separatist leader said it was a hunt for a cache of weapons. The local defense ministry said it was part of an “information war” with the Ukrainian government. But whatever it was, it resulted in roughly two dozen commandos taking over a major hotel on Saturday night in the Crimean capital of Simferopol.

Coming one day before the breakaway leaders of Crimea stage a referendum on their secession from Ukraine, the siege of the Hotel Moskva showed just how volatile and close to conflict the region remains. When the gunmen arrived, pulling up to the hotel in unmarked vans with tinted windows and no license plates, the hotel was packed with journalists, including this correspondent, who have arrived from around the world to cover Sunday’s historic referendum.

None of the troops wore any identifying insignia, much…

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