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Aleksandr Malykhin, chairman of Luhansk's separatist election commission, announces results of the referendum in the Luhansk region on May 12.
Aleksandr Malykhin, chairman of Luhansk's separatist election commission, announces results of the referendum in the Luhansk region on May 12.

Live Blog: Crisis In Ukraine (Archive)

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-- Self-appointed leaders of the Ukrainian separatist region of Donetsk appealed to Russia to consider absorbing it to "restore historic justice" and to send in troops.

-- Pro-Russian separatists in the eastern Ukrainian region of Luhansk said they would not allow voting for the May 25 presidential election to be conducted.

-- Diplomats say the European Union agreed to impose sanctions against 13 additional individuals and two companies, believed to be the first time the EU has targeted companies over the Ukraine crisis.

-- Ukrainian President Oleksandr Turchynov called the votes a "sham" and the United States said they were illegal and merely "an attempt to create further division and disorder in the country."

-- RFE/RL's Ukrainian Service said one of its affiliate radio stations in Donetsk was taken off the air by gunmen and replaced by a pro-Russian broadcaster.

-- The Kremlin said Ukrainian officials in Kyiv should hold talks with pro-Russian separatists on the results of the self-rule referendums, adding that it respected the "expression of the people's will."

-- Insurgents in eastern Ukraine said nearly 90 percent of voters backed self-rule in the votes.

*NOTE: Times are stated according to local time in Kyiv
22:51 12.5.2014
That concludes our live blogging for May 12, barring major developments. You can continue to follow our live-blogging coverage here.
22:35 12.5.2014
Our #UkraineUnspun ace @GKates is back from Odesa and filed "Reports Of Plans To Evacuate Odesa's Jewish Community Appear To Miss Mark." Definitely worth a read.
22:19 12.5.2014
Perhaps no major surprise here, but still...
22:06 12.5.2014
The Russian Foreign Ministry has issued a statement criticizing the EU for its fresh expansion of sanctions (against these individuals and companies), saying, according to Reuters:
"By continuing its faulty, anti-Russian sanctions logic, the European Union undermines trust in itself as a partner and casts doubt on its claim to an objective role in supporting a resolution of Ukraine's internal conflict...."

"It's time for Brussels to stop seeing the substantial part of the Ukrainian people who do not accept the Kiev authorities as 'Russian separatists' and understand that it will be impossible to resolve the conflict without acknowledging its internal nature...."

"It behoves [sic] the EU to respect the results of the referendums by residents of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions and support the realisation of the will of the people through dialogue between representatives of Kiev and southeastern Ukraine."
22:02 12.5.2014
The European Union's official journal has published the names of the 13 individuals and two entities against which it announced sanctions today. They are, via our Brussels correspondent Rikard Jozwiak:

-- Vyacheslav Viktorovich VOLODIN
-- Vladimir SHAMANOV
-- Vladimir Nikolaevich PLIGIN
-- Petr Grigorievich JAROSH
-- Oleg Grigorievich KOZYURA
-- Igor Mykolaiovych BEZLER
-- Roman LYAGIN
-- Aleksandr MALYKHIN
-- Natalia Vladimirovna POKLONSKAYA
-- Igor Sergeievich SHEVCHENKO
and the legal entities:
21:56 12.5.2014
More of today's international condemnation of the eastern Ukrainian referendums and Moscow's actions, this time European Council President Herman Van Rompuy at a news conference with Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk following their meeting in Kyiv.
"European Union is firmly committed to Ukraine's unity, sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity. We will not recognize the annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol, likewise we do not recognize the so-called referenda of yesterday. They are illegal, illegitimate, and not credible. They are a way to stir up division among Ukrainian communities."

"Violence must stop. Rule of law must be ensured. Human rights must be protected and political demands must be pursued by political and not by armed means. The only elections we will recognize are the [Ukrainian] presidential elections on the 25th of May."
21:54 12.5.2014
Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev told a cabinet meeting in Moscow announcing the Russian government's decision to start charging Ukraine advanced payments for natural gas, effective from May 13:
"[As to the] implementation of what has been talked about a number of times -- switching to an advanced payment mode with our contractual customers in Ukraine, in other words Ukraine. This is what I think -- it is high time we stopped coddling them. Inform them that as of tomorrow advanced payment is being introduced. I believe that all possible means of resolving this situation otherwise have already been explored by Gazprom."
21:52 12.5.2014
More complete versions of the statements today from Denis Pushilin, a leading member of the self-declared "Donetsk People's Republic."
"We, the people of the People's Republic of Donetsk, based on the results of the referendum from May 11, 2014, and the declaration of sovereignty of the People's Republic of Donetsk, declare that from now on the People's Republic of Donetsk is a sovereign state."

"Based on the will of the people of the People's Republic of Donetsk and in order to restore historical justice, we are appealing to the Russian Federation to consider accepting the People's Republic of Donetsk as part of the Russian Federation."

"We spent most of the 20th century as part of Ukraine. However, it was only possible because Ukraine itself was a part of a single state. 1991 was a catastrophe in the Russian and Slavic world. And still, our people kept hoping that Ukraine, Russia, and Belarus will restore its historic unity. This hope perished in March 2014, when, during a coup the government in Ukraine was taken over by the Kyiv junta, which promotes neo-Nazi, anti-Russian, and Russophobic ideology."
21:26 12.5.2014
From our newsroom:
In the city of Slovyansk, which has been a flashpoint in the Donetsk region, the pro-Russian, self-styled "mayor," Vyacheslav Ponomaryov, called for Russian troops to provide stability and peace.

Ponomaryov described Ukrainian troops as occupiers.

Speaking in the administrative building in Slovyansk, the stronhgold of the armed rebels in eastern Ukraine, he said that Ukrainian soldiers "should go."

Asked whether the "Donetsk People's Republic" needed Russian military help, Ponomaryov replied: "I support this. We need Russian troops to provide stability and a peaceful life in the region's future."
21:04 12.5.2014
RFE/RL's Ukrainian Service reports that one of its affiliate radio stations in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk has been taken off the air by gunmen.

A "Radio Era-FM" representative told RFE/RL that armed men switched off the station's signal before midday local time today. The RFE/RL correspondent in Donetsk reports that the frequency is now being used to broadcast the programs of the "Republic" radio station, which is apparently backed by pro-Russian separatists.

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