The attempt of the illegitimate Kiev authorities to open a criminal case against Black Sea Fleet Commander Vice-Admiral Alexander Vitko is another provocation aimed to destabilize Crimea, the Russian Defense Ministry said.
"The attempt of the illegitimate Kiev authorities to open a criminal case against the Russian admiral is another provocation of those who have breached Ukrainian laws and usurped power in that country," Russian Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov told reporters on Wednesday
He commented on threats of the Ukrainian law enforcement authorities to start criminal prosecution of Russian Black Sea Fleet Commander Vice-Admiral Alexander Vitko on the counts of "incitement to high treason and sabotage."
"Such steps may be a source of destabilization in Crimea, which is currently the calmest and most stable region of Ukraine," Antonov said.
"The Black Sea Fleet commander does his duties on lawful grounds and in strict compliance with the Russian-Ukrainian agreements regarding the deployment of the Russian fleet on the Ukrainian territory and the Russian Armed Forces regulations," he said.
"Against the backdrop of constant threats of violent actions of ultra-nationalists, he is taking necessary measures to protect the sites of deployment of Black Sea Fleet units and residencies of servicemen and their families and to give them reliable protection and security," the deputy minister said.
With Crimea now holding a referendum on becoming a part of Russia on March 16, there’s growing anxiety from Russian and foreign experts about another Cold War
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