UN, February 3. /TASS/. The United States should keep its anti-Russian sanctions in place as long as Crimea remains a part of Russia, Washington’s UN Ambassador Nikki Haley told the UN Security Council.
"Crimea is a part of Ukraine," she said. "Our Crimea-related sanctions will remain in place until Russia returns control over the peninsula to Ukraine."
She added that her country was seeking to improve relations with Moscow, at the same time asserting that Crima’s reunification with Russia was "aggression," "occupation" and "military intervention."
Crimea and Sevastopol voted to become a part of Russia on March 16, 2014, in a historical referendum in which 80% of the republic’s registered voters took part. A total of 96.7 of those who cast their ballots in Crimea and 95.6 of those in Sevastopol supported reunification with Russia.
The move was sealed by a treaty, signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin on March 18, 2014. The document was ratified by the upper chamber of the Russian parliament, the Federation Council, three days later.
In July 2014, the European Union and the United States imposed sanctions against Crimea and Russia and have repeatedly extended and expanded them.