17 March 2014, 11:25

With 100% ballots counted, 96.77% of Crimeans vote to re-unite with Russia - Crimean election chief

With 100% ballots counted, 96.77% of Crimeans vote to re-unite with Russia - Crimean election chief

The latest updates from Crimea’s election authority show that 96.77% of the voters who cast their ballots in Sunday’s referendum supported Crimea’s reunification with Russia. "The number of the votes cast in the Crimea-wide referendum in favor of reunification with Russia as an entity of the Russian Federation is 1.233,002 million, or 96.77 percent," Crimea’s chief election commissioner Mikhail Malyshev, told reporters, summing up the outcome of Sunday’s vote.

96.77% of Crimeans voted to re-unite with Russia – Crimean election chief

The turnout was 1.274,096 voters or 83.1 percent of Crimea’s eligible voters, he said, adding that the figure did not include the city of Sevastopol.

Those who voted for Crimea to enjoy a broader autonomy within the framework of Ukraine total 31,997 or 2.51%, Malyshev said.

Less than one percentage of the ballots – 9,097 or 0.72% - were declared invalid.

The Central Elections Commission signed the final protocol at 6:50 am local time (8:50 am Moscow Time) on March 17.

"We were receiving protocols from the 27 district commissions all night long. The last one came at around 6:00 am [8:00 am Moscow Time]. After that, our commission compiled the final protocol," Malyshev said.

All of the commission’s members put their signatures under the document, he said.

Republic of Crimea asks UN, all world nations for recognition – Supreme Council resolution

The Republic of Crimea has asked the United Nations and all world countries to recognize the independent country that’s been formed by the peoples of Crimea. This comes in a resolution that the Supreme Council of Crimea adopted earlier today.

According to the resolution, the Republic of Crimea will build relationships with other countries on the basis of equality, peace, good-neighbourliness, and other universally recognized principles of political, economic and cultural cooperation between nations.

95.6% of voters in Sevastopol supported Crimea’s accession to Russia

After all the ballots were counted in the Crimean city of Sevastopol, the number of those who voted for Crimea to join Russia reached 95.6 percent, Valery Medvedev, head of the city’s election commission told local lawmakers who gathered for an emergency session on Monday.

"The turnout in Sevastopol was 89.5 percent," he said.

All of the city’s polling stations operated normally, no violations of public order were registered during the vote, he said.

Results show 96.6 percent of Crimeans voted to join Russia

Preliminary results showed on Monday that 96.6 percent of Crimeans voted to join Russia at Sunday's referendum. More than 270,000 eligible voters in Sevastopol (over 93% of people who cast their ballots) supported Crimea's accession to Russia at the Sunday referendum, city election commission head Valery Medvedev said on Monday.

The Crimea chose to be a part of Russia at the Sunday referendum, Crimean Prime Minister Sergei Aksionov said at a rally in Simferopol. "No one can take away our victory. We are going to Russia," Aksionov said to the accompaniment of the Russian national anthem. "We are going home. Crimea within Russia. Hooray, comrades,"

Crimeans in Simferopol and Sevastopol were seen already waiting for celebrations of the referendum outcome.

Most, when asked, expressed their confidence that this third referendum in the history of the peninsula would direct them "home" to Russia.

Referendum in Crimea: official result to be announced on 17 March, first data shows 96% vote for Russia

The official result of the referendum on Crimea joining Russia will be announced in Sevastopol at a city council’s session on 17 March, chairman of the Sevastopol legislative assembly Yuri Doynikov said at a meeting after the polling stations closed. An extraordinary session of the Sevastopol city council is to be held at 10:00 am local time (12:00 pm Moscow time, 08:00 GMT) on Monday, he said.

Read the Voice of Russia Live Report on referendum in Crimea here

About 96% ballots in favor of reunification with Russia

Upon the results of processing of 75 percent protocols from the polling stations after Sunday’s referendum on the future of Crimea, the percentage of voters who supported Crimea’s reunification with Russia stands at 95.7 percent, Mikhail Malyshev, the chief of the Crimean legislature commission in charge of the referendum told reporters early morning Monday. He said that another 3.2 percent voters had preferred the continuation of Crimea’s stay within Ukraine and 1.1 percent ballots had been invalidated.

Crimea votes 95.5% to join Russia in referendum - preliminary results

Crimeans voted 95.5 percent in favour of joining Russia in a disputed referendum on Sunday, according to preliminary results with 50 percent of ballots counted, local authorities said. Referendum commission chairman Mykhail Malyshev said 3.5 percent had voted to remain in Ukraine with wider autonomous powers and 1.0 percent were "spoiled ballots".

An overwhelming majority of 95.5 per cent of voters supported Crimea's accession to Russia in Sunday's referendum, according to preliminary results carried by Russian media.

93% suppport for Crimea's accession to Russia – exit polls

Polling stations in Crimea have closed, the referendum is over. A total of 93 percent voted on Sunday to join Russia, according to an exit poll publicized by the Rossiya 24 TV channel. Seven percent of Crimeans favored remaining a part of Ukraine, it shows. Turnout exceeded 80 percent, the Crimean News Agency reported.

Voting ended at 20:00 pm local time. Crimeans were able to cast their votes at 1,205 polling station.

"The results of the referendum exit polls in Crimea and Sevastopol: 93 percent voted for the reunion of Crimea with Russia as a constituent unit of the Russian Federation. 7 percent voted for the restoration of the 1992 constitution of the Republic of Crimea and Crimea’s status as part of Ukraine," the Crimean republican institute for political and social research said in a statement as cited by RIA Novosti.

The overall voter turnout in Crimea constituted over 80 percent, reports local news agency, Kryminnform.

In Sevastopol, about 85 percent of voters had cast their ballots by 1600 GMT, two hours before the polling stations closed, according to the chair of the city’s election commission Valery Medvedev.

International observers will present final declaration on referendum in Crimea on March 17

International observers at the referendum on the status of the Crimea are to present their opinion on Monday, head of the mission, Tadeusz Piskorski (Poland), said at a press-conference in Simferopol. "Tomorrow morning we will present our final declaration," he said.

Latvian MP Tatyana Zhdanok said in turn that there were no irregularities at the polling stations that she visited. She mentioned that voter activity was slightly lower in Bakhchisarai but still on average 40 percent of listed voters had voted by noon.

"We spotted nothing wrong in the voting procedure," she said.

Tatyana Zhdanok emphasized high voting activity in Simferopol. "Queues had already formed at 8 am there and at 10 am about 50 percent of voters had already voted," she said.

Zhdanok also pointed out that the voting was well organized and there were no breaches of democracy.

The referendum on the status of the Crimea was held on 16 March.

Crimea referendum: Turnout exceed 80%, early results to be announced at 8:20 pm GMT

Turnout at the referendum currently underway in Crimea will be not less than 80 percent, Crimean Information Minister Dmitry Polonsky said on Sunday. "Data proves that the turnout exceeds 70 percent," the minister said, adding that joint efforts allowed the authorities to organize the referendum within the shortest period of time. "The team, which is taking the lead in Crimea, has been created recently. It involved young and ambitious politicians".

"Crimeans have waited for a referendum for a long time. We're ready to share our experience with Scotland and Catalonia: you'll see how the referendum is organised," Polonsky said.

Early results of Crimea referendum in Sevastopol to be announced at 8:20 pm GMT

The preliminary results of the Crimea-wide referendum in Sevastopol will be announced at 10:20 pm local time (00:20 am Moscow Time, 8:20 pm GMT).

"The preliminary results of the referendum will be announced in Nakhimov Square at 10:20-10:30 pm local time," Sevastopol’s Acting Mayor Dmitry Belik told reporters on Sunday.

The voting process is being monitored by 1,730 observers and over 180 media representatives from various countries, Belik said.

"Our referendum is as transparent as our ballot boxes," he said, adding that Monday, March 17, would be an off-day in Sevastopol.

"Residents of Sevastopol should have an opportunity to take a rest and celebrate the results of the referendum," he said.

Turnout unprecedented as Crimea residents choose their future

Turnout for the secession referendum in Crimea is unprecedented, observers say, with no indications of violations, they noted, adding that Crimean residents are not being forced to vote the "right way." And what can be seen in Crimea now are the happy faces of voters hurrying to polling stations. This is according to members of Russia's observer mission who spoke with the Voice of Russia.

Crimean residents are choosing their future; to join Russia or to broaden Crimea's powers as part of Ukraine. Despite poor weather in Crimea, many elderly people have travelled to at local polling stations to vote. Russian senators who have already visited several polling stations in Simferopol and Yalta, registered no violations and praised organizers for a high level of preparations. The referendum meets international standards, including those stipulated in the UN Charter, the first deputy chairman of the Committee on International Affairs Vladimir Dzhabarov said.

"We are in Yalta now and have already visited six polling stations. There are many people everywhere. Despite the bad weather in Crimea, gusting wind and rain, the numbers of people determined to cast their vote is increasing by the minute. The situation is quiet everywhere. As it seems to me, voting is being carried out in line with international standards. After receiving ballot papers, people are going to the booths and then casting them in transparent ballot boxes. All voters bring a passport, or a copy if necessary. One can even see 80-year-old grannies with walking sticks at the polling stations because they are determined to take part in the referendum."

For Crimean citizens, March 16 is a festive occasion, a member of Russia's Committee on International Affairs, Igor Morozov, said in an interview with the Voice of Russia.

"We continue to visit the polling stations in Sevastopol. Although it is raining hard, there are many people everywhere. People who arrived at the polling stations with their family members are queuing to vote. We saw elderly people among them as well, many of them. As early as Tuesday, voters began to visit local polling stations, trying to find out whether they were listed to vote."

"According to information available, the Ukrainian regime has blocked all information on registered voters and electoral lists. This was from the executive secretary of the election commission. Therefore, polling station personnel compiled the lists based on the last elections in 2012, he said.

"Today all voters are making a historic decision and they understand that perfectly well too. All polling stations we have visited comply with international standards. All documents are in order, and the working personnel are highly qualified.

It is hard even to imagine that Crimean residents are voting under pressure and even if Western countries refuse to recognize the referendum outcome, we are well aware of the fact that Russia will perform its historic mission in any case. There have been precedents created in both international law and practice. We know perfectly well about the existence of UN regulations that brought Kosovo into being some time ago. Therefore, we are absolutely sure that both Crimea and Russia are acting within the international law framework," Igor Morozov said.

Read also:

No infringements of freedoms and incredibly high turnout at Crimean referendum - observers

People actively vote around Crimea - head of referendum organizing commission

Crimean independence referendum begins

Crimean referendum fully in line with UN Charter - Russian FM Lavrov

US refuses to listen to voice of reason over Ukraine crisis - Moscow

US willing to politicize situation in Ukraine as much as possible - Moscow

Russia vetoes UN resolution on Crimea, China abstains

Voice of Russia, Interfax, TASS, dpa, AFP

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