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Burger King Denies Plans to Expand Into Crimea

Burger King Worldwide has refuted reports that it plans to open restaurants in Crimea.

Burger King Worldwide reached out Thursday to quash reports that the fast food chain's Russian franchise operator would expand to Crimea, which Russia recently annexed from Ukraine.

On Wednesday, Burger King Russia CEO Dmitry Medovy told news agency Itar Tass: "We are planning to open in Crimea, but I cannot say when exactly it will happen or how many outlets the company will have."

In the hours after the report surfaced, The Moscow Times was told that Burger King Russia's management was on a plane and was unavailable to comment either by phone or email.

On Thursday Bryson Thornton, communications director for Burger King Worldwide, slapped down the news. "Neither Burger King Worldwide, nor any of its franchisees, have plans to open Burger King restaurants in Crimea," he wrote in an email.

Since taking over the peninsula last month, Russia has been subjected to Western condemnation and economic sanctions. On April 4, McDonald's announced it was closing its three restaurants in Crimea, citing unspecified supply issues.

"Like many other multi-national companies, McDonald's is currently evaluating potential business and regulatory implications which may result from the evolving situation in Crimea," the company said in a statement, Reuters reported.

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