Crimean Tatar leader: EU sanctions 'ineffective'
Saturday, March 22, 2014
SIMFEROPOL, Ukraine - European Union sanctions against Russia are "ineffective," Crimean Tatar National Assembly President Refat Chubarov said on Saturday.
"World leaders are talking about Crimean Tatars but they don't help properly. I watched the U.N. meeting live. Twelve or 13 delegates made speeches, only half of them supported Crimean Tatars. It seems that all those speeches were ineffective," Chubarov said.
Speaking to an Anadolu Agency correspondent, Chubarov said that the "so-called referendum" violated the law by changing Crimea’s border.
Pointing out that Crimean Tatars are in between Russia and Ukraine, Chubarov said around 2 million Crimean Tatars’ homeland is under threat.
He also claimed that Crimean Tatars would lose their citizenship rights -- such as voting or running for election -- if they don't accept Russia’s offer.
"We boycotted the referendum, only 1,000 people went to polls from around 185,000 Crimean Tatars," he added.
On Friday, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed into law the annexation of Ukraine's strategic peninsula of Crimea. The move followed a March 16 referendum in Crimea where 97% of voters chose to secede from Ukraine and join Russia. The United States, the European Union and Ukraine regard the vote as "illegitimate."
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