NEW YORK, April 15 (RIA Novosti) – A UN Human Rights report accusing Russia of rigging Crimea’s referendum is propaganda created by Washington, lacking both grounds for credibility and evidence, Paul Craig Roberts, a former Assistant US Treasury Secretary told RIA Novosti Tuesday.
“This orchestrated propaganda has been arranged to serve the US agenda, to discredit the referendum, and to deflect attention away from Washington’s overthrow of the elected democratic government in Kiev and then establishing a ‘stooge’ one,” said Roberts.
The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights published a draft report Tuesday, claiming Russia used propaganda, torture, kidnappings and repression of those expressing disagreement or anti-Russian sentiment ahead of the vote.
Although 97 percent of Crimea voters supported the annexation, the results of the last month’s referendum were denounced by the West.
“The referendum was witnessed by a number of international observers, and none of these observers reported anything wrong, but stated everything was honest and fair without any sign of troops or intimidation,” Roberts stressed, noting that even the slightest wrongdoing would have made it to the headlines of American and European newspapers.
“Furthermore, no one can be made to go vote and yet there was something around an 84 percent turnout, obviously volunteer,” he added, speculating that the accusations do not originate with Crimeans or the current government in Kiev.
“The report is not believable, and all the allegations are false,” said Roberts. “It’s an attempt to discredit the self-determination of the people of Crimea. There should be another report criticizing the unelected puppet government appointed by Washington."
“The Russian government can’t accept violence against the Russian population in eastern and southern Ukraine as it could not accept it against the South Ossetians when Georgia invaded,” the expert insisted.
“The crisis is driven by Washington toward war, and this report is just a piece of propaganda to justify it,” he concluded, dismissing the UN document as meaningless and unreliable.
The report also reiterates Ukraine’s refusal to recognize the results of the Crimean referendum, claiming that it was in violation of the country’s Constitution, all the while providing no specific proof for the multiple “concerning cases.”
The UN official report draws on a series of “allegations,” “claims,” “reports,” and “concerns,” repeatedly restating the March 27 decision of the General Assembly that the Crimea referendum “had no validity.”
The incriminating document follows a series of Western claims denouncing Russia’s position on Ukraine and dismissing the results of the Crimean referendum to join Russia as illegitimate.
Although widely denounced by the West, the referendum in Crimea was fully compliant with international law and must be recognized as legitimate, according to the Russian government.