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  1. Ukraine Main Page
  2. An Independent Nation
  3. A Struggling Economy and a Troubled Government
  4. Gas Causes an Energy Crisis
  5. Several Rounds of Elections and Another Gas Crisis
  6. Ally of Former Prime Minister Jailed
  7. 2012 Language Bill and New Election
  8. Massive Protests Call for Yanukovich's Resignation
  9. Yanukovich Flees Capital
  10. Russian Troops Sent to Crimea
  11. Putin Announces Annexation of Crimea
  12. Unrest Spreads to Other Eastern Cities
  13. Referendums on Autonomy Held in Other Eastern Regions
  14. Billionaire Businessman Wins Presidential Election
  15. Passenger Jet Crashes in Eastern Ukraine
  16. Offensive by Ukrainian Military Results in Gains; Rebels, Government Agree on Cease-Fire
  17. Pro-Western Parties Dominate Parliamentary Elections
  18. Cease-fire in Tatters Amid Resurgence of Fighting
  19. Expectations Low for Renewed Truce Agreement; Economy in Tatters
Referendums on Autonomy Held in Other Eastern Regions

The referendums on regional autonomy were held in Donetsk and Luhansk on May 11. Both provinces overwhelmingly approved the referendums; 90% of voters in Donetsk voted in favor of self-rule, and 96% did in Luhansk. Acting President Turchynov denounced the votes as "a farce." The U.S. and several European nations also dismissed the referendums. Polls showed, however, that the results were not an accurate reflection of how a majority of eastern Ukrainians felt about independence. Most prefer to remain part of Ukraine; only those in favor of autonomy turned out to vote. Russia expressed little appetite for annexing either region, reluctant to take on the economic burden or risk further sanctions.

On May 15, thousands of unarmed steelworkers and miners took to the streets in Mariupol, the region's second-largest city. The pro-Russian separatists withdrew, ceding control of the city. Workers in several other cities followed by the end of the day. They were urged on by Rinat Akhmetov, the country's richest man who employs the miners and steelworkers, who said they may lose their jobs if Russia annexed the region. Mariupol was the site of deadly battles between government troops and separatists a week earlier. As many as 20 separatists were killed when troops fired on the police headquarters building that the separatists had attempted to seize.

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