Russian power play: Crimea vote on joining Russia

New Russian power play: Crimea parliament sets vote to break away from Ukraine, join Russia
Reported by Yuras Karmanau And Juergen Baetz, The Associated Press
Posted Mar 6, 2014 1:00pm
SIMFEROPOL, Ukraine – Ukraine lurched toward breakup Thursday when lawmakers in Crimea unanimously declared they wanted to join Russia and would put the decision to voters in 10 days — and Russian lawmakers pushed a bill to facilitate a handover. Russian President Vladimir Putin’s hand was almost certainly behind the dramatic move, but it was not clear whether he is aiming for outright annexation, or simply strengthening his hand in talks with the West.

The EU announced limited punitive measures against Putin’s government — including the suspension of trade and visa talks — and the U.S. said it was imposing travel restrictions on opponents of Ukraine’s new government. Both were discussing further sanctions. More>>>

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