by Ashot Safaryan
The March 16 referendum in Crimea has once again demonstrated domination of the right of self-determination over the principle of territorial integrity, Stepan Safaryan, Secretary of Heritage Party, told ArmInfo.
Drawing parallels between the developments in Crimea and the Karabakh conflict, Safaryan said that the reasons of the given two conflict situations differ radically. "The Karabakh conflict originated after the collapse of the Soviet Union, while the situation in Crimea is a result of Kyev's aspiration to the West. Nagorno Karabakh exercised its right to self-determination as a result of the war it was force into. Meanwhile, Crimea did it as a result of Russia's intervention. These are quite significant differences. The peoples' right to self-determination is consistently dominating on the other principles. In this aspect, the situations are similar," Safaryan said.
Forecasting further developments amid confrontation of Russia and the West, Heritage representative drew attention to the damage the developments around Crimea has caused to the Kremlin-initiated Customs Union.
"Now Russia will hardly manage to look attractive and constructive to its potential partners. Actually, the developments in Ukraine has become a serious obstacle to Moscow's integration projects," he said. To recall, vast majority of voters in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea (96.77%) voted for joining Russia on the March 16 referendum. Another 2.51% voted for restoration of the Constitution of the Republic of Crimea of 1992 and for leaving the region as part of Ukraine. Another 0.72% of ballots were recognized invalid.