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Duma faction leaders to submit statement on Crimean referendum

March 17, 2014, 18:33 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The Duma will discuss the statement on March 18

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Sergei Naryshkin (center) during State Duma session (archive)

Sergei Naryshkin (center) during State Duma session (archive)

© ITAR-TASS/Mikhail Dzhaparidze

MOSCOW, March 17. /ITAR-TASS/. Leaders of factions in the State Duma (lower house of Russian parliament) and its Speaker Sergei Naryshkin will submit a statement in support of the referendum on March 16, in which the Republic of Crimea proclaimed independence from Ukraine.

The Duma will discuss the statement on March 18, First Deputy Speaker Ivan Melnikov said on Monday, March 17.

“Now that the Supreme Soviet of Crimea has adopted all the necessary decisions, the statement on Crimea will be number one issue on the State Duma’s agenda tomorrow,” he said, adding that it would be submitted by four faction leaders and Sergei Naryshkin.

Just Russia party Sergei Mironov said earlier that the Duma would support the referendum in Crimea.

“The State Duma is preparing a draft [statement] on the situation in Crimea, and we express our unconditional support for the results of the referendum. We ask the present authorities of Crimea to ensure the security of people, equality and normal socioeconomic conditions for the life of all residents of Crimea,” Mironov said.

In the referendum held on March 16, two questions were asked:

1. Do you support Crimea’s reunification with Russia as its constituent member?

2. Do you support the restoration of the Constitution of the Republic of Crimea of 1992 and the status of Crimea as a part of Ukraine?

The ballots in Sevastopol also included a question on its accession to Russia as a city with a special status.

Mikhail Malyshev, head of the Crimean parliament commission that organized the referendum, said 96.77% of people who came to the polling stations voted for Crimea’s accession to Russia.

In Sevastopol, 95.6% of people, who voted in the referendum, also supported accession to Russia.

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