The Office of the President of Ukraine in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea condemned the so-called “regional and local elections” held by Russia on the illegally annexed peninsula and thanked the European Union for its consistent position on its non-recognition. “Regional and local elections were held in the Russian Federation on 13 September. The gubernatorial elections also took place in the city of Sevastopol. The European Union has not recognised the illegal “annexation” of Crimea and Sevastopol by the Russian Federation and therefore does not recognise the holding of elections on the Crimean Peninsula. The European Union will admit no one elected in a Russian-organised vote on the Crimean Peninsula, who claims to “represent” Crimea and Sevastopol, as representative of those territories that are part of Ukraine. The European Union remains steadfast in upholding Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty,” the statement said.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine also expressed a strong protest. “The Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol are temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine, the legal regime of which is determined by the norms of international humanitarian law. The holding of pseudo-elections in the territories of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol by the Russian Federation is illegitimate, and their results will not have any legal consequences. All those involved in the preparation and conduction of illegal ‘voting’ in the temporarily occupied Crimea will be liable according to the laws of Ukraine.”
As the Permanent Representative of the President of Ukraine in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea Anton Korynevych noted, “The so-called “regional and local elections” in the temporarily occupied territory of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol are a continuation of the Russian Federation’s violations of Ukraine’s state sovereignty and territorial integrity. The lack of respect for the Constitution of Ukraine, Ukrainian legislation, as well as norms of international law is a long-standing hallmark of the Russian Federation. And we in the Mission continue to work to inform Ukraine’s partners about systemic human rights violations, politically motivated persecution, replacement of the population, and persecution of the indigenous Crimean Tatar people in Crimea to continue international pressure, isolation, and sanctions against the Russian Federation.