Western Sanctions Mount as Russia Invades Crimea Further
Russian troops invaded Crimea prior to the region’s referendum on joining Russia — an annexation voted for by a large majority, but arguably while under military occupation — and eventually further military moves were made on Sevastopol, an important naval headquarter and Crimean port. Now Russian troops have invaded one of the last functioning military bases in Crimea, a marine base in port city of Feodosia. Reports say that the invasion saw shots fired from Russia troops and use of stun grenades in order to get inside, noting that Russia soldiers were unarmed. “The invading troops were using stun grenades and also firing automatic weapons.The interior of the compound is full of Russian troops,” said Vladislav Seleznyov, Ukrainian military spokesperson in Crimea, to Reuters.
Both Ukraine and the West have denied the legitimacy of Crimea’s vote to join Russia, though Ukraine had offered the region greater autonomy within the country prior to the region’s decision. Russia voted to annex Crimea as of March 21, and in a speech at the red square, Russian President Vladimir Putin said to his fellow citizens that, “We have done a lot together, but we will do much more.” According to Reuter’s footage, he said,”We will need to solve many tasks, but I know I’m confident that we will overcome everything, resolve everything because we are together. Glory to Russia!”
Ukrainian troops have been told to evacuate according to a spokesperson for the interim Ukrainian President, Oleksandr Turchynov. “The acting President of Ukraine has given an order to the Ukraine Defense Ministry for the withdrawal of all Ukrainian forces from Crimea,” she said to CNN.