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Ukraine crisis: Russian foreign minister urges deputies to ratify Crimea treaty

Published on Mar 20, 2014 9:17 PM
 
Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov speaks during a news conference in Moscow March 20, 2014. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov presented a treaty on annexing Crimea to the lower house of parliament on Thursday, March 20, 2014 and urged legislators to accept the Ukrainian region as part of the Russian Federation. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

MOSCOW (REUTERS) - Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov presented a treaty on annexing Crimea to the lower house of parliament on Thursday and urged legislators to accept the Ukrainian region as part of the Russian Federation.

Approval of the treaty in the State Duma was in no doubt after President Vladimir Putin signed it on Tuesday, and ratification will be complete when the Federation Council, or upper house, votes on the treaty on Friday.

"I am certain the passage of these documents will be a turning point in the fate of the multi-ethnic peoples of Crimea and Russia, who are linked by the close ties of historical solidarity," Lavrov told the State Duma.

Describing annexation of Crimea as needed to protect ethnic Russians there, he said: "To this day, lawlessness continues, and there are daily actions by nationalists, anti-Semites and other extremists on whom the new (Ukrainian) authorities depend."

 
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