UKRAINE's acting president Oleksandr Turchinov has branded the planned referendum on Crimea joining Russia as a 'farce, a fake and a crime against the state'.

In a televised address from Kiev, Mr Turchinov said the decision was "illegitimate and unnecessary, it contradicts the will of the Ukrainian people".

He cited Article 73 of the country's constitution, which says issues relating to borders must involve a "referendum across the whole of Ukraine".

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Meanwhile, Interpol is reviewing Ukraine's request for a "red notice" to be put out for the arrest of ousted president Viktor Yanukovich. He is wanted on charges of abuses of power and murder and has gone into hiding in Russia.