Moscow: Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine have decided to boycott nationwide legislative elections set for Oct 26 and hold their own vote a week later, the leader of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People`s Republic has said.
Residents of the Donetsk region will go to the polls Nov 2 to elect members to a Supreme Soviet, Alexander Zakharchenko said Tuesday.
His counterpart in the rebel-run region of Lugansk, Alexei Kariakin, told Russia`s ITAR-TASS news agency that voting would take place simultaneously in both the regions.
Analysts suggested that a successful eastern boycott of the Ukrainian legislative elections would amount to de facto independence from Kiev.
The Autonomy Law passed by the Ukrainian parliament stipulates that the insurgents can elect representatives to the legislature in Kiev, but the separatists appear to be not very interested.
They say that they will not allow Kiev to hold elections in the areas they control, which amount to about one-third of the territory in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions.