Crimea referendum complies with intl law - Putin tells Merkel

Russian President Vladimir Putin and German Chancellor Angela Merkel held telephone talks on Sunday, the Kremlin press service reported.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and German Chancellor Angela Merkel held telephone talks on Sunday, the Kremlin press service reported.

"The Russian and German leaders discussed the current crisis in Ukraine, as well as the Crimean referendum being held on Sunday. Putin said that the Crimean referendum is proceeding in full compliance with international law, first of all Article 1 of the UN Charter, which seals the principle of the nations' equality and right to self-determination. Putin also said that Russia will respect the Crimean residents' choice," the Kremlin press service said.

"The Russian president again expressed concern about tensions being instigated by the radical groups in Ukraine's eastern and southeastern regions with the Kiev authorities' connivance," the Kremlin said.

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