A desperate, dirty move by Russia as it sees that it is losing the hearts and minds of Crimeans, never mind eastern Ukrainians.
Firstly, the Constitution of Ukraine does not allow for a region to hold a referendum of this nature. Secondly, with Russian soldiers running round openly and covertly, no fair referndum is likely to be run. Any referendum should be without any foreign military presence but with an international team of monitors to be able to track the entire process from start to finish. Thirdly, the questions presented do not even offer Crimeans the choice of returning to their more autonomous status prior to the invasion OR to a possible new relationship with Kyiv, as Kyiv is proposing. Fourthly, without having run the referendum yet, how can the (il)legitimate Crimean legislature ask for membership in Russia? Boy are they desperate to get this going their way… because it’s slowly not the way that most Crimeans now want.
Crimean parliament moves referendum date to March 16
Simferopol, March 6 (Interfax-Ukraine) – The proposed referendum on the status of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea has been moved from March 30 to March 16.
The Crimean Supreme Council passed a resolution on the holding of the Crimean referendum, including in Sevastopol, on Thursday, the press centre of the Crimean parliament reported.
According to the document, the referendum ballot paper will contain two questions:
1. Do you support Crimea’s reunification with Russia?
2. Do you support the restoration of the Constitution of the Crimean Republic dated 1992 and Crimea’s status as a part of Ukraine?
The question which gets most votes will be seen as a direct expression of the will of the population of Crimea, the document reads.
The Crimean parliament also addressed President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin and the Federal Assembly of the State Duma of the Russian Federation with a proposal to initiate the procedure of Crimea’s joining Russia as a subject of the Russian Federation.