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Code: 266156
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Date: Saturday, March 15, 2014
Russia isolated in UN Crimea vote
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Russia has vetoed a draft UN resolution criticising Sunday's secession referendum in Ukraine's Crimea region - the only Security Council member to vote against the measure.

China, regarded as a Russian ally on the issue, abstained from the vote.

Western powers criticised Russia's veto over the referendum, which will ask Crimeans if they want to rejoin Russia.

In Moscow, tens of thousands rallied against Russia's actions in Ukraine, the biggest such protest in two years.

Russia intervened in the Crimean peninsula after the fall of Ukraine's pro-Moscow President Viktor Yanukovych on 22 February.

Mr Yanukovych had sparked months of unrest across Ukraine by pulling out of a deal on closer ties with the European Union, and later opting for closer ties with Russia.

The Crimean region was part of Russia until 1954 and still hosts its Black Sea fleet, but Russia has signed agreements promising to uphold Ukraine's territorial integrity.

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