In Slavyansk, the “self-rule” vote went ahead despite overnight violence in the eastern Ukrainian town.
Two Ukrainian soldiers were injured as pro-Russian activists attacked government troops guarding a TV antenna, according to local media.
The violence appeared not to deter pro-Moscow voters from casting their ballots:
“They were shooting, but that doesn’t scare us. We’ve suffered so much that we are not afraid of shooting. If we vote normally, than the shooting will stop, and everything will go fine,” said one pro-Russian.
There are electoral lists, but it appears those wishing to cast their ballot can do so at the polling station of their choice.
According to those who organised the vote, the turnout is good. The organisers said that at around midday it was running at some 68 percent.
Ukrainians who back the government in Kyiv have stayed away.