Russian President Vladimir Putin has asked the country’s senators to approve sending Russian troops to Ukraine to settle the situation there. Russian MPs have said that the turmoil in Crimea could allow for such a move.
Earlier on Saturday, the speaker of the Russian State Duma Council Valentina Matvienko said that the current circumstances in Ukraine make such a move possible.
The final decision to send troops to Crimea lies with President Vladimir Putin as Supreme Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, speaker of the Russian State Duma Council Valentina Matvienko said. The current circumstances make such a move possible, she said.
“It’s possible in this situation, complying with a request by the Crimean government, even to bring a limited contingent of our troops to ensure the safety of the Black Sea Fleet and the Russian citizens living on Crimean territory. The decision is for the president, the chief military commander, to make, of course. But today, taking the situation into account, even that variant can’t be excluded. We need to protect the people,” Matvienko said.
The Russian government has so far been careful in its assessment of the new self-proclaimed Ukrainian government in Kiev. Matvienko said the reason for that was Russia counting on its Western partners, who vowed to guarantee the February 21 agreements between Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich and the opposition.
“Russia did not interfere in the situation in Ukraine for a very long time and showed restraint, assuming that the Western states, which became backers of the agreements, would see that strict compliance with the deal is observed,” she said.
However, after “violent upheaval” took place in Ukraine, the Western states did not come up with “any reasonable measures or responses,” Matvienko said.
Russia, in contrast, for a very long time has urged the situation to be resolved by lawful means, and called for the anti-coup sentiments in Crimea and in eastern Ukraine to be heard, she said.
“Not seeing an adequate reaction from the West, we could no longer maintain status quo,” the speaker concluded.
Matvienko stated as thousands of pro-Russian demonstrators rallied in the Crimean cities of Simferopol, Melitopol, Yevpatoria and Mariupol, protesting against the rule of new Kiev authorities. source -RT