Crimea, a peninsula of some 2 million people, resisted the authority of the leadership that came to power in Ukraine in February 2014. At a referendum which was held on March 16 voters overwhelmingly supported secession from Ukraine and joining Russia. President Vladimir Putin officialy signed the bills on accession of Crimean peninsula and Sevastopol with Russian Federation into laws on March 21. He asserted that the referendum was held in accordance with international law and UN Charter. The US and EU imposed sanctions on senior Russian officials, including visa bans and asset freezes, in protest of Russia's support of Crimea's actions.