SELIGER, August 29 (RIA Novosti) – The process of getting the international community to recognize Crimea’s reunification with Russia is going to be “long and tiresome,” Russian President Vladimir Putin said Friday.
“I think that the process of solving problems related to [Crimea’s] recognition will be solved in a long and tiresome manner. It looks strange to me, because the [international recognition of] the Kosovo independence [vote] shows that when there is political will, decisions similar to those made in Kosovo or Crimea are recognized with ease,” Putin said.
Crimea, previously an autonomous republic within Ukraine, refused to recognize the legitimacy of the coup-imposed government in Kiev that came to power following the February overthrow of President Viktor Yanukovych, instead voting to rejoin Russia in a referendum, in which over 96 percent of voters supported the motion.
The West condemned the move and refused to recognize Crimea as part of Russia.
In March, the United States and the European Union imposed the first package of sanctions against Russia, accusing it of meddling in Ukraine’s internal affairs and violating the country’s territorial integrity.
As the Ukrainian crisis escalated, the United States and the European Union introduced several new rounds of targeted sanctions against the Russian economy.
The United States also persuaded its allies to add Russian individuals and entities to their own blacklists.
Moscow has repeatedly referred to the sanctions as counterproductive, noting that Russia is not party to the internal Ukrainian conflict and stressing that all the Kremlin’s actions comply with international law.