Press release

Foreign Secretary condemns Russia’s recognition of Crimea as a 'sovereign state'

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

The Kremlin has this evening announced that President Putin has signed a decree recognising Crimea as a sovereign state.

Foreign Secretary William Hague

The United Kingdom, in common with the European Union and the majority of the international community, does not recognise the 16th March Crimea referendum or its outcome as legal or legitimate.

The Foreign Secretary said:

The UK condemns in the strongest terms Russia’s flagrant disregard of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. For the UK and her allies the Crimea remains part of Ukraine.

We are witnessing a clear attempt to pave the way for the annexation of part of the sovereign territory of an independent European state, through military force and an illegal and illegitimate referendum.

The UK calls again on Russia to enter into dialogue with Ukraine and with the international community to resolve this crisis through diplomacy and in accordance with international law, not to exacerbate it further through unilateral and provocative actions.

Continuing to ignore those calls will bring serious consequences for Russia. We will urgently consider our response to this latest escalation with our allies and partners, including at the European Council this week.

Further information

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Published 17 March 2014