KIEV, April 18 (RIA Novosti) – Ukraine is set to return its former Black Sea peninsula of Crimea, which rejoined Russia last month, through political and diplomatic means, Ukraine’s acting Foreign Minister Andrii Deshchytsia said Friday.
“We will be returning Crimea under full jurisdiction of Ukraine through political and diplomatic measures,” the minister said, adding that the interim government in Kiev still considers Crimea its territory.
Following the regime change in Ukraine in February, Crimea refused to recognize the legitimacy of the new authorities and signed a reunification deal with Russia on March 18, two days after an independence referendum.
The popular vote in the predominantly Russian peninsula saw a turnout of about 84 percent, and almost 97 percent of voters backed accession to Russia. President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on March 21 to ratify the accession treaties with Crimea and its port city of Sevastopol, which enjoys a special status within the region.
Russia has repeatedly said that Crimea’s decision to rejoin Russia, which reflects the will of the absolute majority, cannot be reviewed and must be respected.
The region approved its new constitution a week ago, sealing its status of an “unalienable” part of Russia.