Thursday, 27 February 2014

Armed Seizure of Parliament in Crimea

(Reuters) - Armed men seized the parliament in Ukraine's Crimea region on today and raised the Russian flag, alarming Kiev's new rulers, who urged Moscow not move troops out of its navy base on the peninsula.

Crimea, the only Ukrainian region with an ethnic Russian majority, is the last big bastion of opposition to the new leadership in Kiev since President Viktor Yanukovich was ousted at the weekend and provides a base for Russia's Black Sea fleet.

'I am appealing to the military leadership of the Russian Black Sea fleet,' said Oleksander Turchinov, Ukraine's acting president.  'Any military movements, the more so if they are with weapons, beyond the boundaries of this territory (the base) will be seen by us as military aggression,' he said, a day after 150,000 troops in western Russia were put on high alert.

Ukraine's Foreign Ministry summoned Russia's acting ambassador in Kiev for consultations as the face-off between Moscow and the West revived memories of the Cold War.

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