Presidential candidate Ksenia Sobchak has been added to an unofficial Ukrainian blacklist after announcing her plans to visit Crimea as part of her election campaign.
Russia annexed the Crimean peninsula from Ukraine in 2014 in a move that was met with Western sanctions. Shortly after announcing her bid for the presidency in the March 18 elections, Sobchak made headlines saying, “according to international law, Crimea is Ukraine's. Period."
In an interview on Tuesday with the Echo Moskvy radio station, Sobchak said she had filed a request with the Ukrainian government to visit Crimea. The next day, her profile appeared on the Facebook page of the Myrotvorets Center, a Kiev-based activist website that identifies people who “pose a threat to Ukraine’s national security.”
“You cannot violate Ukrainian state borders,” their Facebook post begins, adding that Sobchak was added to a list of “mercenaries, terrorists and their accomplices and Russian war criminals.”
Sobchak’s campaign headquarters said on Wednesday that the website would not deter Sobchak from visiting Crimea if she is given approval from the Ukrainian government, the RBC business portal reports.
“If I go to Crimea, it will be through Ukrainian territory”, she told Echo Moskvy on Tuesday. “I think it’s the right the to do.”