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Possible irregularities seen in Crimea referendum

Published on Mar 16, 2014 9:03 PM
 
A woman voting at a polling station in Bakhchisaray on Sunday. Voters were seen casting their ballots even before the official start of Crimea's referendum on Sunday, March 16, 2014, at a polling station in Sevastopol in one of several possible irregularities. -- PHOTO: AFP

SIMFEROPOL, Ukraine (AFP) - Voters were seen casting their ballots even before the official start of Crimea's referendum on Sunday at a polling station in Sevastopol in one of several possible irregularities.

Journalists including AFP were also turned away at some polling stations in Sevastopol and Simferopol despite having official media accreditation from Crimea's authorities.

There was blatant campaigning for Russia, which is not allowed under election rules, in the form of rehearsals for parties later on Sunday to celebrate an expected pro-Moscow result.

Mr Mykhaylo Malyshev, the head of the referendum organising committee, denied reports that Russian citizens were being allowed to cast ballots, saying that only residents of Crimea or those with Ukrainian passports were allowed to take part.

 
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