Russia defends rebel vote in eastern Ukraine - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Russia defends rebel vote in eastern Ukraine

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 Russia has angrily dismissed the EU's warning that it wouldn't recognize local elections organized by pro-Russia insurgents in eastern Ukraine, warning that the rejection of the vote could derail a fragile cease-fire deal.

   Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has warned that the elections set for this Sunday would violate a cease-fire agreement reached in Minsk last month. The EU also warned Wednesday that it wouldn't recognize the vote, which "would run counter to the letter and the spirit of the Minsk Protocol and disrupt progress towards finding a sustainable political solution."

   The Russian Foreign Ministry responded by saying that the original Minsk agreement foresaw local elections in the rebel-held territories between Oct. 19 and Nov. 3.

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