KIEV, May 12 (Xinhua) -- Some 96 percent of voters in Ukraine's eastern Lugansk region supported the act of state-rule of the self-proclaimed Lugansk People's Republic, the organizer said Monday.
Some 3.8 percent of voters in the referendum backed staying with Ukraine, head of Lugansk People's Republic's electoral commission, Alexandr Malyhin, told a press conference.
According to Malyhin, the turnout for the referendum was 75 percent.
Lugansk was one of two regions holding referenda seeking independence from Ukraine. In neighboring Donetsk, 89.07 percent of voters backed their region's independence, according to referendum organizers.
Ukrainian authorities and some Western countries denounced the controversial referenda as "illegal," while Russia said it respects the choice of people in the two Ukrainian regions.
The referenda were held after Crimea joined Russia on March 18 following an independence referendum in the southern Ukraine peninsula, which was not recognized by the West.
Last Wednesday, Putin asked the protesters in Donetsk and Lugansk to postpone their polls and seek dialogue with Ukrainian authorities, but the request was rejected.