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Ukraine Troops Prepare to Evacuate Crimea
In March of 2014 the parliament of the Republic of Crimea adopted a Crimean declaration of independence from Ukraine, ahead of a planned referendum. An overwhelming majority voted in favor of the independence of Crimea from Ukraine and joining Russia as a federal subject. On March 18, the President of Russia, the Prime Minister of Crimea, and the mayor of Sevastopol jointly signed an agreement for Crimea and Sevastopol to join the Russian Federation.
According to The Wall Street Journal, the secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, Andriy Parubyi, did not provide details on the mechanisms or on timing of the plan, but Ukraine’s government is preparing to evacuate its remaining military personnel and their families from the peninsula of Crimea. The Washington Post has reported that, Russia forced the Ukrainians to abandon several military bases and facilities on the peninsula, including their navy headquarters. It has been reported that Russian officials have demanded the Ukrainian troops either defect to the local Crimean military or abandon their posts, but many have refused. Since 700 BC, the peninsula has changed hands several times. It has also been reported by Tvnz.co.nz One News that, many servicemen in Crimea have already switched sides to Russia.
Andriy Parubyi, secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council reported that “We’re working on a plan to quickly and effectively move not only the military personnel, but first of all their family members, to continental Ukraine.”
According to Defense Minister Ihor Tenyukh, the Ukrainian parliament has called up 40,000 army reserves for active duty and has voted to provide Ukraine’s defense forces with the equivalent of $600 million dollars. The Guardian reported that the amount is for the next three months. Ukraine’s armed forces will be mobilized to “full readiness,” Tenyukh stated. “Crimea was, is, and will be our territory.”
Image credit: www.blouinnews.comUkraine Troops Prepare to Evacuate Crimea by Jaan