Ukraine’s president has called an emergency meeting of his security chiefs following Sunday’s elections in the separatist east of the country.
As expected Donetsk and Luhansk voted in rebel leaders in polls denounced by Kyiv as illegitimate.
President Petro Poroshenko said the elections could derail the peace process:
“The pseudo-elections are a brutal violation of the Minsk Protocol of September 5. The Minsk Protocol provides for the holding of early local elections in the area of the Donbass solely under the laws of Ukraine. We provided them with the given opportunity. The farce of November 2 jeopardises the entire peace process – the beginning of which has been achieved through outstanding efforts.”
While the West and the European Union have condemned the votes, there has been no official reaction from Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Washington says there will be further sanctions if Moscow continues to flout the Minsk deal.
A nominal ceasefire has been in place in eastern Ukraine since September 5 but there have been repeated violations by both sides.