East Ukraine referendum raises fears of dismemberment

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By Matt Robinson and Alessandra Prentice MARIUPOL/SLAVIANSK, Ukraine (Reuters) - East Ukrainian rebels pressed ahead with a referendum on self-rule on Sunday and new fighting flared in a conflict that has raised fears of civil war and pitched relations between Russia and the West into their worst crisis since the Cold War. We all want to live in our own country,\" said Zhenya Denyesh, a 20-year-old student voting at a three-storey concrete and glass university building. Asked what he thought would come after the vote, he replied: \"It will still be war.\" Western leaders threatened more sanctions against Russia in the key areas of energy, financial services and engineering if it continues what they regard as efforts to destabilize Ukraine. Moscow denies any role in the rebellion or any ambitions to absorb the mainly Russian-speaking east into the Russian Federation following its annexation of the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea after a referendum in March.