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BANJALUKA, March 18 /SRNA/ - Republika Srpska President Milorad Dodik on Tuesday congratulated the people of Crimea on a democratic referendum and decision to go independent, stressing that the law was not violated in the process.


Dodik said Republika Srpska feels that the people of Crimea took part in a legitimate and democratic referendum in keeping with the Constitution, international law and the UN Charter on the Right of People to Self-Determination.

“I congratulate the people of Crimea on a democratic and fair referendum, on their decision to become independent, which they voted for, and support also goes to today’s agreement reached between the Russian Federation and Crimea, which means the beginning of a procedure to include Crimea in the Russian Federation,” Dodik said at a press conference in Banjaluka after a meeting with the Russian Ambassador to BiH, Alexander Botsan-Kharchenko.

Dodik said that Crimea is an example of respect for the UN Charter and the right of a people to self-determination, an essential right of all peoples, which should be rehabilitated and supported, as it does not threaten anyone and gives freedom to a people that desires it.

“It is evident that not only Russians turned out for the referendum in Crimea, as was expected, but other residents as well, and a high percentage of support for independence is an indicator of the situation in this area,” Dodik said.

He said that joint positions on many issues, primarily on the need to respect the Dayton Agreement and to preserve peace and stability in BiH, which is a primary goal, were reiterated and agreed at his meeting with the Ambassador of the Russian Federation today.

“The relations between Srpska and the Russian Federation are daily being confirmed as stable and good, full of understanding for the circumstances both in Srpska and Russia,” Dodik said and added that the relations will develop in the future.

He thanked the Russian Ambassador for his position on the need to respect the Dayton Agreement in BiH and international law.

Dodik said that they also discussed at the meeting his recent visit to Russia and a number of bilateral issues, starting from the Southern Stream to cooperation in the oil and banking sectors. /end/sg