• 13-MAR-2014

  • SOURCE: S&D Group at European Parliament

Crimea: Russia Must Respect Territorial Integrity of Ukraine

MEPs called for a strong response to Russia on 12 March in a debate over its military involvement in Ukraine. They also rejected the upcoming referendum on independence in Crimea, which they saw as manipulated and contrary to international and Ukrainian law. The EU should also support Ukraine and continue to work towards a peaceful resolution of the conflict.

MEPs expressed their position via a resolution to be adopted today in Strasbourg.

On that occasion, Hannes Swoboda, President of the Socialists & Democrats, said:

"Let me be very clear, this is not a legitimate referendum. All the referendums we saw in the past have been totally different. They were done on a legal basis, with international observers, no military pressure on the national assembly." He said we should make clear to Russia that we cannot accept this referendum.

"Our message is very clear: we want to support the new Ukrainian government but at the same time we ask from this government to reach out to all the citizens – Russian-speaking or not – in the country to try to unite it, to give clear signals in that direction and go very soon for elections."

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