Donetsk Refuses to Postpone May 11 Referendum

KIEV (CIHAN)- Federalists in Donetsk have agreed to go ahead with a referendum on self-determination planned for this Sunday.

“After the vote that was held today, the unanimous decision was to go ahead with the referendum May 11,” Co-Chairman of the Donetsk People’s Republic’s Denis Pushilin said Thursday.

The decision to press on with the referendum on greater autonomy for the southeastern Donetsk region was taken to a vote Thursday at the People’s Committee in the capital city Donetsk.

The news came after Russian President Vladimir Putin had urged pro-federalization activists on Wednesday to put off the referendum to ensure the start of national dialogue to resolve the ongoing crisis in the country.

Ukrainian authorities today said the “anti-terrorist” operation against the restive cities in the country’s south and east would continue despite the vote, with the national security chief claiming that the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) does not have the right to hold the referendum.

Citizens of the mainly Russian-speaking southeastern regions of Ukraine have refused to recognize the legitimacy of the country’s interim government and have announced referendums on self-determination in Donetsk and Luhansk regions, to be held on May 11.

In April, Kiev’s current authorities launched a special operation to crack down on the protesters, leading to violent clashes in major towns of southeastern Ukraine and dozens of casualties. (CihanRia)


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