Crimea referendum: What does the ballot paper say?

Pro-Moscow authorities on the Crimean peninsula are holding a referendum on whether the region should secede from Ukraine and join Russia.

Ukraine's interim government, the EU and the US have condemned the move as "illegal".

A copy of the 16 March ballot paper - released by the Crimean parliament - appears to give voters two choices: to join Russia immediately or gain greater autonomy within Ukraine.

See the document below to find out more:

  • × Ballot paper

  • 1. Description


    The ballot paper is in three languages. Russian, Ukranian and Crimean Tatar - the language of the indigenous Tatar community of Crimea. The opening sentences explain that the ballot paper is for use in the referendum on the future of the Crimea set for 16 March.

  • 2. First option


    Voters are directed to check one of two boxes corresponding to two questions. The first asks: do you support reunifying Crimea with Russia as a subject of the Russian Federation?

  • 3. Second option


    The second question asked is: Do you support the restoration of the 1992 Crimean constitution and the status of Crimea as a part of Ukraine?

    (The wording "restoring the 1992 constitution" does not make it clear whether this refers to the original version of the constitution, declaring Crimea an independent state, or the later amended version, in which Crimea was an autonomous republic within Ukraine).

  • 4. Warning


    The ballot paper carries a warning in all three languages that choosing both available options makes it invalid.

There is also a referendum website that carries a mechanism to vote online.

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