Russian forces have reportedly launched an attack on the military base in the Ukrainian city of Simferopol, which is Crimea’s main city. Interfax (via Reuters) cites soldiers at the base as the source of the information.
Ukrainian solders barricade themselves in
Military officials with the Ukrainian army said the soldier who was injured was wounded in the collarbone and neck. They said they have barricaded themselves in on the second floor of a building on the base. Currently they report that they have “about 20 people here and “about 10 to 15 others.” The second part of the statement is a bit unclear in terms of where the other people are.
They report that Russian forces have seized the base’s headquarters and taken the Ukrainian commander. Russia has demanded that the Ukrainian army surrender, but officials say they have no intention of doing so. Ukrainian Prime Minister Yatseniuk has called the attack “a war crime.”
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Putin signs Crimea treaty
Earlier today, Russian President Vladimir Putin sighted a treaty which made Crimea part of Russia, according to Reuters. The West and Ukraine have adamantly objected to that annexation. Acting Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk called the annexation “a robbery on an international scale,” according to CNN.
The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry says it doesn’t recognize the treaty which states that Crimea is now part of the Russian Federation. Putin also said today that Russia wouldn’t try to invade more parts of Ukraine. Also Ukrainian officials have echoed comments made by Hillary Clinton already, who compared Putin’s actions to those of Adolf Hitler in the events leading up to World War II. Ukrainian Interim President Oleksandr Turchynov said that Putin is “mimicking the fascists of the last century.”
Meanwhile, the West has levied sanctions against certain Russian and Ukrainian people, so far leaving businesses out of it. U.S. officials have called a G7 – EU crisis meeting, which will be held next week in The Hague. Vice President Joe Biden called Russia’s invasion of Crimea “a brazen military incursion,” according to the BBC.