MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said that the country's constitution should be amended to provide the right to self-determination to Crimean Tatars, local media reported Tuesday.
"These amendments stem from the inherent right of the Crimean people to self-determination within the sovereign Ukrainian state," Poroshenko was quoted as saying by the Korrespondent news outlet.
Crimean Tatars are a Turkic ethnic group that currently accounts for an estimated 13 percent — or about 260,000 people — of the Crimean population. Crimean Tatars were forcefully deported by the Soviet authorities to Central Asia during WWII.
After Crimea decided in a referendum to secede from Ukraine and reunify with Russia in March 2014, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree rehabilitating ethnic minorities that suffered under the rule of Soviet leader Joseph Stalin, including Crimean Tatars.