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SEVASTOPOL, June 03, /ITAR-TASS/. A total of 251 refugees from eastern Ukraine’s embattled Donetsk and Lugansk regions have come to the federal Russian city of Sevastopol, the personnel of a local boarding-school told Itar-Tass Monday.
The refugees got registered at the boarding-school. Some of them found shelter at their friends' and relatives' places. Most came from Slavyansk but there are people from Donetsk, Makeyevka, Mariupol and other cities and towns.
Ukraine has been in turmoil since a coup occurred in the country in February and President Viktor Yanukovich had to leave it for security reasons. In March, the Crimean Peninsula and the city of Sevastopol within it having a special status refused to obey the coup-imposed Ukrainian leaders and seceded from Ukraine after a referendum to reunify with Russia after 60 years as part of Ukraine.
Despite Moscow’s repeated statements that the Crimean referendum on secession was in line with the international law and the UN Charter and in conformity with the precedent set by Kosovo’s secession from Serbia in 2008, the West and Kiev have refused to recognize the legality of Crimea’s reunification with Russia.
Massive protests against the coup-imposed Ukrainian authorities erupted in Ukraine’s southeastern territories, mainly the Donetsk and Lugansk regions, after Crimea’s accession to Russia. Demonstrators in the Southeast, who have been demanding Ukraine’s federalization, seized some government buildings.
A punitive operation by Kiev against federalization supporters has already claimed dozens of lives, including civilian. The Donetsk and Lugansk regions held referendums on May 11, in which most voters supported independence from Ukraine.