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Referendum In Crimea

Voting began on March 16 in a disputed referendum in Crimea, the Ukrainian region currently occupied by Russian troops, where inhabitants are being asked whether the peninsula should secede and become part of the Russian Federation or remain in Ukraine. The Ukrainian government and Western states say the vote is "illegitimate," while Moscow insists it is "in line with international law."

An armed man, believed to be Russian serviceman, stands guard outside a Ukrainian military base in Perevalnoye, near the Crimean city of Simferopol.
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An armed man, believed to be Russian serviceman, stands guard outside a Ukrainian military base in Perevalnoye, near the Crimean city of Simferopol.

A woman casts her ballot at a polling station in Simferopol, the administrative capital of Crimea.
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A woman casts her ballot at a polling station in Simferopol, the administrative capital of Crimea.

A man shows an identity document, emblazoned with the former USSR coat of arms, at a polling station in Simferopol.
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A man shows an identity document, emblazoned with the former USSR coat of arms, at a polling station in Simferopol.

Crimean Prime Minister Sergei Aksyonov (center) leaves a voting booth to cast his ballot in Simferopol.
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Crimean Prime Minister Sergei Aksyonov (center) leaves a voting booth to cast his ballot in Simferopol.

A woman looks at her ballot paper before casting her vote in the village of Pionerskoye.
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A woman looks at her ballot paper before casting her vote in the village of Pionerskoye.

A member of the pro-Russian "self-defense" forces that emerged in Crimea alongside the Russian occupation shows his ballot at a polling station.
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A member of the pro-Russian "self-defense" forces that emerged in Crimea alongside the Russian occupation shows his ballot at a polling station.

People sign in to vote at a polling station in Sevastopol.
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People sign in to vote at a polling station in Sevastopol.

An elderly woman leaves a polling booth in the Crimean capital.
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An elderly woman leaves a polling booth in the Crimean capital.

Election officials carry a mobile ballot box to a home in the village of Pionerskoye.
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Election officials carry a mobile ballot box to a home in the village of Pionerskoye.

Armed men, believed to be Russian servicemen, stand guard outside a Ukrainian military base in Perevalnoye.
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Armed men, believed to be Russian servicemen, stand guard outside a Ukrainian military base in Perevalnoye.

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