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Abkhaz leader says radicals run process of Ukraine’s collapse

April 15, 2014, 13:46 UTC+3
Alexander Ankvab said he hailed the recent territorial reunification of Crimea with Russia
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Alexander Ankvab

Alexander Ankvab

© ITAR-TASS/Alexei Nikolsky

SUKHUM, April 15. /ITAR-TASS/. Ukraine, which had recently been subjected to a turbulent political turmoil, is literally collapsing and the ongoing developments raise more than serious concerns, Alexander Ankvab, the president of Abkhazia, said on Tuesday.

Protests against the new self-proclaimed Ukrainian authorities, who came to power as a result of a coup in February, erupted earlier in the month in Ukraine’s Russian-speaking eastern territories, namely the Donetsk, Luhansk and Kharkiv regions, with demonstrators demanding referendums on the country’s federalization. The current authorities in Kiev repeatedly stated that dispersing protests by forcible means could be an option.

“We see with our own eyes that the country is collapsing and the nationalist radicals are running the show. This is an illustrative lesson for everyone,” Ankvab said at a news conference with Russian journalists in Sukhum, the capital of Abkhazia.

The leader of Abkhazia said he hailed the recent territorial reunification of Crimea with Russia, the move that had been blasted by the West and the current authorities in Kiev.

“This was fair from any point of view,” Ankvab said. “A temporarily lost but an integral part of Russia has returned to the country.”

The Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol, a city with a special status on the Crimean Peninsula, where most residents are Russians, signed reunification deals with Russia on March 18 after a referendum two days earlier in which an overwhelming majority of Crimeans voted to secede from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation.

The developments came after a coup in Ukraine in February that occurred following months of anti-government protests, often violent. President Viktor Yanukovych had to leave Ukraine citing security concerns. Crimea and Russia refused to recognize the legitimacy of the new self-proclaimed Ukrainian authorities.

The new Ukrainian leadership and the West keep claiming the Crimean plebiscite was illegal and refuse to recognize Crimea part of Russia, although Moscow has repeatedly stated that the Crimean referendum complied with the international law and the UN Charter, and was in line with the precedent set by Kosovo’s secession from Serbia in 2008.

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