Unknown individuals seized the buildings of the Crimean Parliament (Verkhovna Rada) and of the Council of ministers. A Russian flag was raised above the parliament, local news agencies report with reference to a source at the Interior Ministry of the Crimea.
The chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean-Tatar nation, Refat Chubarov, confirmed the information. According to him, the above-mentioned governmental buildings were stormed on Thursday overnight.
"I had a call 20 minutes ago, and I was told that armed men in unmarked uniforms seized the buildings of the Verkhovna Rada of the Crimea and the Council of ministers. They have not set forth any requirements yet," Chubarov wrote on his Facebook page.
The Russian flag was raised above the building of the Council of Ministers as well, BSNews reports.
Crimean Tatars held a number of rallies in the Crimea yesterday. They want the autonomous republic remain a part of Ukraine. Russian-speaking adversaries of the new Ukrainian authorities also took to the streets to express their opinions. As many as 30 people were wounded in the clashes near the Parliament of the Crimea between pro-Russian activists and Crimean Tatars.
The power in Ukraine was changed on February 22nd, when the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine dismissed President Viktor Yanukovych from power. The coup caused a wave of protests among pro-Russian Ukrainians.
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On December 14, President Putin holds his annual Q&A session with Russian and foreign journalists. This conference is considered to be the beginning of his presidential campaign