G-7 Slams "Sham" Votes in Russian-Controlled Ukraine Areas


Berlin, Sept. 23 (Jiji Press)--Leaders of the Group of Seven major powers Friday stressed that there are no legal effects in "sham" referendums launched in four Russian-controlled areas in Ukraine on joining Russia.

The G-7 leaders "strongly condemn the sham referenda that Russia attempts to use to create a phony pretext for changing the status of Ukrainian sovereign territory, which is subject to an ongoing Russian aggression," said a statement issued on the day.

"These sham referenda initiated today by Russia and its proxies have no legal effect or legitimacy," said the leaders of Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States plus the European Union.

The leaders criticized that the votes launched in the four eastern and southern areas in Ukraine "clearly breach the United Nations Charter and international law and go diametrically against the rule of law among nations."

"These referenda in areas that have been forcibly put under Russia's temporary control in no way represent a legitimate expression of the will of the Ukrainian people, who have consistently resisted Russian efforts to change borders by force," the statement continued.

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