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Russian armed forces did not enter Crimea — Putin

March 18, 2014, 15:33 UTC+3
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MOSCOW, March 18. /ITAR-TASS/. Russian Armed Forces did not enter the Republic of Crimea and the country did not exceed the numerical strength of 25,000 servicemen at the country’s naval base on the peninsula, Russian President Vladimir Putin stated on Tuesday.

“Yes, Federation Council upper house of parliament granted the right to the Russian president to use Russian Armed Forces in Ukraine, but I did not use this right.

“Russian Armed Forces did not enter Crimea. They have already been staying there according to the international treaty. We have reinforced our armed grouping, but at the same time we did not exceed maximum permissible numerical strength of our Armed Forces in Crimea. It is set at 25,000 servicemen. This was not needed at all,” Putin noted.

Putin's statement on Crimea's application to join Russia. Live

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