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Crimea Adopts Provisional Declaration of Independence

Published: March 12, 2014 (Issue # 1801)



  • The parliament of Crimea, a majority ethnic Russian region within Ukraine, declared independence Tuesday ahead of a popular vote on secession and annexation by Russia.
    Photo: Wikimedia Commons

KIEV, Ukraine (AP) The Crimean parliament voted Tuesday that the Black Sea peninsula will declare itself an independent state if its residents agree to split off from Ukraine and join Russia in a referendum.

Crimeas regional legislature on Tuesday adopted a declaration of independence of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea. The document specified that Crimea will become an independent state if its residents vote on Sunday in favor of joining Russia in the referendum.

Related: Top 5 Myths About Russias Invasion of Crimea

Western nations have said they will not recognize the vote as legitimate. But the move might be used as an attempt to ease tensions with Crimea existing as a self-proclaimed state without Russia moving quickly to incorporate it into its territory.

After a brief war between Russia and Georgia in 2008, some leaders in Georgias breakaway provinces of Abkhazia and South Ossetia also asked to join Russia, but their request was never granted.

Meanwhile, Ukraines acting president on Tuesday called for the formation of a national guard and for the mobilization of reserves and volunteers into the countrys armed forces.

Oleksandr Turchynov asked the national parliament to approve turning the countrys Interior Ministry troops into a National Guard to defend the country and citizens against any criminals, against external and internal aggression.

Related: Putin Defends Crimea Votes Legality to Cameron, Merkel

Turchynov said that the mobilization will include those who have previously served in the army and volunteers.

Russian forces have strengthened their control over Ukraines Crimea region in the run-up to a referendum set for Sunday on whether to split off and become part of Russia.

Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk, who is due to fly to Washington to meet with Barack Obama Wednesday, called on Western nations to defend Ukraine against a nation that is armed to the teeth and that has nuclear weapons.

Meanwhile, Ukraines fugitive president, Viktor Yanukovych, accused the countrys new government of fomenting civil war. For his part, Yatsenyuk asked Russia, the U.S. and European Union member Britain to abide by a treaty signed in 1994, in which they pledged to guarantee Ukraines security in exchange for giving up its Soviet-era nuclear weapons.

We are not asking for anything from anyone, Yatsenyuk told parliament. We are asking for just one thing: military aggression has been used against our country. Those who guaranteed that this aggression will not take place, must from the one side pull out troops and from the other side must defend our independent, sovereign state.

Yanukovych, speaking in the southern Russian city of Rostov-on-Don, repeated the Russian claim that the new Ukrainian authorities are kowtowing to radical nationalists, and that they posed a threat to Russian-speaking eastern regions.





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Friday, Aug. 1


Bikers from all around the world will gather to take part in a parade, extreme shows and rock concerts during the International Biker Festival that revs its engines today and runs through Aug. 3 near Olgino Hotel, 4/2 Primorskogo Shosse.


The Peter and Paul Fortress will be turned into an open-air cinema today and tomorrow as part of the 5th International Short and Animation Film Festival. A huge screen across the fortress walls will air short films non-stop with board games, photo sessions and other activities also on offer for visitors. For more information, visit www.opencinemafest.ru



Saturday, Aug. 2


Gatchina Palace Park Museum will host its second annual Night of Light, an impressive audio-visual show across the night sky. Tickets are 600 rubles ($16).


If graphic design is more your thing then check out Illustration Day, where you will be able to visit an exhibition, attend lectures by professionals and even show experts some of your own work. The event starts at noon at Zona Deystvia, 73 Ligovsky Prospekt. The entrance fee is 350 rubles ($10).



Sunday, Aug. 3


History lovers shouldnt miss the chance to see reenactments of World War I battles in Pushkin at noon. Besides exciting war scenes, visitors can enjoy live music, historical costumes, an equestrian show and a fancy-dress parade starting from the Moscow gates.


Garage Sale, the popular and growing flea market where nothing is priced over 500 rubles ($14.11), starts today at noon in Loft-Project Etagi, 74 Ligovsky Prospekt. Be sure to get in early to score a bargain. Entry costs 50 rubles ($1.40)



Monday, Aug. 4


Continue the working week with a calm and steady mind with a free yoga lesson at 7 p.m. in the Bukvoyed store at 23A Vladimirsky Prospekt.



Tuesday, Aug. 5


Visit The Romanov Dynasty doll exhibition today, where more than fifty porcelain dolls depicting Russian rulers, and made by Olina Ventzel, will be on show. The exhibition continues through Aug. 31 in Sheremetyev Palace, 34 Fontanka Naberezhnaya.



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