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ITN reporter says UN envoy decided to leave Crimea

March 05, 2014, 23:11 UTC+3 LONDON

According to James Mates, he said he would be glad to leave Crimea if this might help defuse tensions in the region

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LONDON, March 05, /ITAR-TASS/. UN special envoy Robert Serry, who got into an incident involving unidentified armed men while on a mission to Crimea, has decided to leave the region, ITV reporter James Mates who was accompanying him said in a dispatch right from the scene.

Serry returned to his car to go right away to the airport. According to Mates, he said he would be glad to leave Crimea if this might help defuse tensions in the region.

Deputy Secretary-General of the UN, Jan Eliasson, told reporters by telephone from Kiev earlier Robert Serry was not abducted in Crimea Wednesday and he made a phone call from there,

According to Eliasson, Serry got into an unpleasant incident in Crimea, as his car was stopped by unknown people who told him to go to the airport and the get out of the Crimea. Eliasson said that, to the best of his knowledge, Serry got out of the car and headed for a nearby cafe, where he made a call to Eliasson from.

From the cafe, Serry reported walked to the hotel where he was staying.

When the reporters asked Eliasson if he had any idea about the identity of the people, who had stopped Serry, he said he did not know what language they spoke but some of them, in all evidence, were armed.

He described them as a group numbering ten to fifteen people.

Eliasson also said the UN did not plan to call Serry off from Crimea but UN decision-makers were considering the options of what was to be done in this situation.

Serry arrived in Crimea on Tuesday at Eliasson’s instruction to assess the situation in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea.

Wednesday, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said he was sending Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights, Ivan Simonovic, “to Kiev and Eastern part of Ukraine, including Crimea, to monitor the human rights situation.

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