The European Union reaffirmed its commitment to the policy of non-recognition of the results of the referendum in Crimea, after which the peninsula rejoined Russia, EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said in a statement on Sunday, amid the fifth anniversary of the peninsula’s reunification with Russia.

“The European Union remains committed to fully implementing its non-recognition policy, including through restrictive measures. The European Union calls again on UN Member States to consider similar non-recognition measures,” Mogherini said.

She added the Crimea’s reunification with Russia led to negative consequences for the region’s stability.

“Russia’s violations of international law have led to a dangerous increase in tensions at the Kerch Strait and the Sea of Azov. The unjustified use of force by Russia against Ukraine on 25 November 2018 is a reminder of the negative effects of the illegal annexation of the Crimean peninsula on regional stability,” the statement reads.

Crimea rejoined Russia in 2014, when 97 percent of those who participated in the referendum on the matter supported the reunification. The reunification was not recognized by Ukraine or Western states, which subsequently imposed economic and political sanctions on Moscow. Russia has repeatedly stated that the referendum was conducted in compliance with international law. 

The incident in the Kerch Strait between Russia and Ukraine, when three Ukrainian ships were detained after illegally crossing Russian border in November 2018, has further deteriorated the relationship between Moscow and the European Union.

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