Kharkov federalists decide against holding referendum on May 11

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Pro-federalization activists in Kharkiv decided to postpone referendum on greater autonomy, Ukrinform reported Friday citing local media. “We are indeed not ready to hold referendum on May 11. We have not agreed on issues that would be common for Kharkov, Lugansk and Donetsk. Unfortunately, we split [over the wording]. That is why we made a decision not to hold referendum on May 11,” Yuri Apuhtin, leader of the local southeastern pro-federalization movement, was quoted as saying.

He earlier said that Kharkov activists wanted to vote on the federalization issue and creation of the autonomy in the region together with Donetsk and Lugansk on May 11.

On Thursday, authorities in Ukraine’s mainly Russian-speaking Donetsk and Lugansk regions announced they had unanimously voted to press on with the votes scheduled for this Sunday, adding preparations were already underway.

Russian President Vladimir Putin had urged pro-federalization activists on Wednesday to put off the referendum to ensure the start of a national dialog to resolve the ongoing crisis in the country.

 

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