Grigorij Yavlinskij, Putin’s rival in the 2018 presidential election, dropped a brick by saying Crimea belongs to Ukraine, The Apostrof reports Sept. 8.
“Crimea was annexed by Russia. Crimea belongs to Ukraine. The March16, 2014 referendum that led to the illegal grab of Crimea by Moscow had been held under the barrels of Russian troops,” Yavlinskij wrote on his website.
A new referendum must be held under strict international control and include three questions: do the people want to live in Ukraine, independent Crimean state or Russia, he said.
The referendum’s procedure must be established by a special international commission, Yavlinskij said.
“At the referendum, the residents of Crimea must be able to voice their choice freely to live in an open and peaceful society, not in a country where the power is formed by uncontrolled authoritarian groups,” Grigorij Yavlinskij said.