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Ukraine Prez calls referendum a ‘farce’, Kremlin says Russia respects will of people

In what could send temperatures soaring in Ukraine by triggering Crimea memories, Kremlin has stated that w pro-Russian activists declared a thumping victory in the controversial referendum held in the eastern region of Donetsk, reports said Monday.

According to a BBC report, a whopping 89 per cent people voted in the favour of self-rule referendum that recorded a turnout of nearly 75 per cent, said the head of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic election commission Roman Lyagin.

Adding to the concern, is a statement by Kremlin that said that “Russia respects the will of the people”, reported the AFP news agency.

Meanwhile, Ukraine’s President Oleksandr Turchynov told the parliament that the pro-Russians’ vote was a farce, saying, “The farce that terrorist separatists call a referendum is nothing more than propaganda to cover up murders, kidnappings, violence and other serious crimes”.

Despite being called as ”illegal’ and ‘self-destructive’ by the west and Ukrainian authorities, scores of people cast their votes in the much-disputed Sunday referendums held on May 11 in Donetsk and Luhansk, that asked the voters if they supported the “self-rule in the Donetsk People’s Republic/Luhansk People’s Republic?”

According to a BBC report, the referendums were badly organised with haphazard voting in places, as some polling stations didn’t have electoral registers or polling booths.

There were reports of people voting twice as despite voters’ lists in polling stations, people could vote at any station.

Although the voting in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions reportedly went peacefully, there were also some fatalities reported as Ukrainian national guardsmen opened fire on a crowd outside a town hall in Krasnoarmeisk, said the Associated Press.

An AP photo also showed a person, said to be pro-Russian, who was killed in firing by Ukrainian guards in Krasnoarmeisk.

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