MOSCOW, March 17 (Xinhua) -- Ukraine will remain Russia's partner despite the recent events, the chairman of the State Duma, or the lower house of the Russian parliament, said Monday.
"I'd like to reiterate that Ukraine is a partner of ours and temporary difficulties and circumstances should not change these relations of partnership," Sergei Naryshkin told reporters.
He stressed that nothing would turn Moscow and Kiev into opponents.
Naryshkin added that Ukraine's new constitution should envisage a federal status of the country, as all other options would be "hardly possible due to deep chasms between different regions."
Noting that Ukraine "hopefully" will return to a constitutional field, Naryshkin said that the majority of the Ukrainian people might understand and respect the choice of residents of the Crimean peninsula and the city of Sevastopol.
On Sunday, the population of these territories voted overwhelmingly for joining Russia as a new region. The Crimean State Council declared the republic an independent state on Monday.
"Crimea independence will be recognized by Russia through an international treaty," Naryshkin said.
The speaker promised that the State Duma will make the decisions on whether to adopt Crimea to Russia "fast and responsibly."
On Tuesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin will address the Federal Assembly over Crimea and Sevastopol's requests to join Russia, according to the Kremlin press service.