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I UNDERSTAND
English Section

Poland says Russian vote in Ukraine’s Crimea ‘illegal’

09.09.2019 07:30
Poland’s foreign ministry has said that a vote held by Russia in Ukraine’s Crimea peninsula on Sunday was “illegal” and that its results are “invalid.”
The Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs building in Warsaw
The Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs building in WarsawPhoto: Tymon Markowski/MSZ

The Polish foreign ministry said in a statement posted on its website that it “considers illegal the so-called local elections held in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea in Ukraine … by the Russian Federation authorities on 8 September.”

It specifically listed “elections to the so-called State Council of the ‘Republic of Crimea,’ the so-called Legislative Assembly of the Sevastopol City and the so-called Sevastopol City Council.”

The foreign ministry in Warsaw also said in its statement that "Poland invariably supports Ukraine’s independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity.”

It added that the “annexation of Crimea, a Ukrainian territory, by the Russian Federation in March 2014, was a flagrant violation of international law,” as identified by the United Nations General Assembly in its resolution of March 27 that year.

“In this context, Poland deems illegal actions by the Russian authorities in the occupied Crimea, and considers the results of any ‘elections’ invalid,” the Polish foreign ministry said.

It pointed to “the steadily deteriorating human rights situation in the occupied Crimea, the limitation of the freedoms of assembly and belief, repeated illegal detentions, which particularly affect the Crimean Tatars.”

The Polish foreign ministry called for “international solidarity in opposition against such actions taken by the Russian Federation in the annexed Peninsula.”

Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in March 2014 after a referendum that the Ukrainian authorities and the West said was illegal. Earlier, Russian soldiers in unmarked uniforms seized strategic facilities on the peninsula from the Ukrainian army and local authorities.

Last month Poland and 14 other countries in a joint statement refused to recognise the legitimacy of a vote held in the Russian-occupied Abkhazia region of Georgia.

(gs)

Source: IAR, gov.pl