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Obama raises stakes in Crimean standoff with Putin

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President Barack Obama pauses as he talks about the situation in Ukraine, Thursday, March 6, 2104, in the briefing room of the White House in Washington. The president said a referendum for Ukraine’s Crimea region to separate and become part of Russia would violate international law. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

President Barack Obama pauses as he talks about the situation in Ukraine, Thursday, March 6, 2104, in the briefing room of the White House in Washington. The president said a referendum for Ukraine’s Crimea region to separate and become part of Russia would violate international law. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

President Barack Obama speaks about the situation in Ukraine, Thursday, March 6, 2014, in the briefing room of the White House in Washington. The president saod a referendum for Ukraine’s Crimea region to separate and become part of Russia would violate international law. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

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