This Is The Most Important Fact About Ukraine Right Now

About 70% of the southeast Ukraine is against coming under Russian control.

A mid-April poll conducted in each of the 8 regions of the south and east of Ukraine by Kiev’s Institute for International Sociology found that the majority of Ukraine’s residents — many of whom are ethnic Russians — do not support armed pro-Russia separatists who are taking over the region.

Furthermore, a majority believe that Russia is illegally interfering in the internal affairs of Ukraine.

The data, which is representative of the adult population in the region, raises serious questions about regional referendums insurgents want to hold on May 11 as well as Russia’s role in the turmoil.

That’s something to think about as crowds in Donetsk chant “‘Referendum! Russia! Putin!'” and the Russian President says that Ukraine’s military should leave the southeast of the country.

Here are some of the most telling answers from the “The views and opinions of the population of South-Eastern Ukraine: April 2014”:

Here are the regions that have either been annexed by Russia (Crimea) or are under the control of pro-Russia gunmen:

And here’s a rundown of what has happened in the last week or so:

The picture that emerges is that the insurgents — many of whom are heavily-armed Russians wearing military fatigues without insignia — are being used by Putin to commandeer southeast Ukraine and destabilize country’s fragile government.

UkraineREUTERS/Baz RatnerA pro-Russian armed man waves to participants of an International Worker’s Day, or Labour Day, parade in the town of Slaviansk, east Ukraine May 1, 2014.

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