Poroshenko calls Putin's words about "referendum" in Crimea ridiculous
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has called the words of Russian President Vladimir Putin about the "referendum" in Crimea in March 2014 ridiculous.
"These are not Ukrainians, not Ukrainian authorities and people, but they [Russians] who held the referendum. I think this is another convincing proof of the illegality of annexation," Poroshenko told a Svoboda Slova [Freedom of Speech] talk show on Ukraine's ICTV channel, commenting on Putin's words at a press conference after talks with U.S. President Donald Trump in Helsinki on July 16, DW's Ukrainian Service has reported.
As UNIAN reported earlier, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that U.S. President Donald Trump considers the annexation of Crimea illegal but added that "we put paid to this issue."
"Well, posture of President Trump on Crimea is well known, and he stands firmly by it. He continued to maintain that it was illegal to annex it. Our viewpoint is different. We held a referendum in strict compliance with the U.N. Charter and the international legislation. For us, this issue — we put paid to this issue," Putin said in Helsinki.
UNIAN memo. Russia annexed Ukraine's Crimea in March 2014 after its troops had occupied the peninsula. An illegal referendum was held for Crimeans to decide on accession to Russia. De-facto Crimean authorities reported that allegedly 96.77% of the Crimean population had voted for joining Russia. On March 18, 2014, the so-called agreement on the accession of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol to Russia was signed in the Kremlin. The West did not recognize the annexation in response to which sanctions against Russia were introduced. Ukraine's parliament voted to designate February 20, 2014, as the official date when the temporary occupation of Crimea began.