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Issue of returning Ukrainian military hardware from Crimea needs further study — official

January 12, 6:22 UTC+3 KIEV

The decision can only be made at the level of "the country’s supreme political leadership," the Ukrainian navy chief said

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KIEV, January 12. /TASS/. The issue of handing over Ukrainian military hardware left in Crimea requires a "very careful study," Ukrainian Navy Commander Igor Voronchenko said on Thursday evening.

"This requires a very careful study," the official said, adding that the decision will be made at the level of "the country’s supreme political leadership."

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday as he met with the editors-in-chief of printed media and news agencies that Russia was ready to return to Ukraine the military hardware left in Crimea, although this equipment was in a dismal condition. He also said Moscow would not object to the presence of Ukrainian military at the recycling of munitions in Crimea.

Commenting on Putin’s statement, the Ukrainian navy commander said a total of eight Ukrainian warships were stationed in Crimea, and only one of them had troubles with its engines.

"Describing them [warships] as scrap metal is not true," Voronchenko said, adding that Ukraine also left armored vehicles, artillery weapons and aircraft when its military forces left the peninsula.

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