Kazakhstan says it won't recognize referendums in eastern Ukraine

Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev has repeatedly called for the resolution of the Ukrainian conflict in line with the United Nations charter.

People vote during a referendum on the joining of Russian-controlled regions of Ukraine to Russia, in Sevastopol (photo credit: REUTERS/ALEXEY PAVLISHAK)
People vote during a referendum on the joining of Russian-controlled regions of Ukraine to Russia, in Sevastopol
(photo credit: REUTERS/ALEXEY PAVLISHAK)

Kazakhstan, one of Russia's close ex-Soviet partners, will not recognize the possible annexation of Ukraine's eastern regions by Russia through referendums held there, the Central Asian nation's foreign ministry said on Monday.

Voting took place in four Ukrainian regions mostly held by Russian forces, the start of a plan by President Vladimir Putin to annex a big chunk of Ukraine in what the West says is violation of international law that significantly escalates war in the country. Russia calls its actions in Ukraine "a special military operation."

"As for the holding of referendums ... Kazakhstan proceeds from the principles of territorial integrity of states, their sovereign equivalence and peaceful coexistence," ministry spokesman Aibek Smadiyarov said.

"Kazakhstan proceeds from the principles of territorial integrity of states, their sovereign equivalence and peaceful coexistence."

Aibek Smadiyarov

Kazakh President's calls for resolution for conflict

Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev has repeatedly called for the resolution of the Ukrainian conflict in line with the United Nations charter.

 Smoke rises following recent Russian shelling, as Russia's attack in Ukraine continues, in Pazeno area, in Donetsk region, Ukraine August 28,2022.  (credit: REUTERS/AMMAR AWAD) Smoke rises following recent Russian shelling, as Russia's attack in Ukraine continues, in Pazeno area, in Donetsk region, Ukraine August 28,2022. (credit: REUTERS/AMMAR AWAD)

"We reconfirm our readiness to provide all possible assistance to the establishment of a political dialog," Smadiyarov said. "At the same time, our country believes that maintaining stability at either regional or global level is the most important goal."