In an historis speech, Russian President Vladimir Putin thanked the people of Crimea for their vote in the referendum to be united with Russia. Putin went out of his way to welcome all Ukranian people from the Crimea: Russians, Ukranians and Crimean Tatars. The three languages will all be official and minority rights to be guaranteed in the new constitution.
The Russian leader sketched a brief history of the unbreakable ties of the Crimean peninsula to Russia and the Russian people. Putin had harsh words for totalitarian leader Josef Stalin and the oppression of the indigenous Tatars and Nikita Khrushchev for giving away Crimea without consulting the people.
It was an interesting speech which listed all of Russia’s grievances under the last three US presidencies. International law has been flaunted under Bill Clinton – the Kosovo campaign by NATO; George Bush – the Iraq invasion and occupation and the joint US/NATO missile shield in Eastern Europe; and Barack Obama – the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi in Libya while the UN Security Council agreed to a ‘no-fly’ zone to protect civilians.
(RT) – Russia and Crimea have signed treaty of accession of the Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol in the Russian Federation following President Putin’s address to the Parliament.
Russia’s President Vladimir Putin requests parliament to ratify the agreement that would see both Crimea and the city of Sevastopol joining Russia.
“I ask you to consider the adoption of two new subjects of the Federation: Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol,” Putin told Parliamentarians.
Crimea was represented by Prime Minister Sergey Aksenov and Sevastopol mayor Aleksey Chaly, who signed the treaty. The two were accompanied by Crimean top official Vladimir Konstantinov.
“Since the adoption of the Russian Federation Republic of Crimea in structure of the Russian Federation two new entities – of the Republic of Crimea and the City of Federal importance Sevastopol – have been created,” the text of the treaty reads.
The document will be sent for approval to the constitutional court, and then to ratification in the parliaments of the two countries.
Crimea has already officially introduced the ruble as a second currency along with the Ukrainian hryvna, which will remain an official currency until January 1, 2016. The transition period will be acting till January, 1 of 2015.
(AP) – At the start of his remarks, Putin welcomed officials from the “Republic of Crimea,” as Russia recognizes the breakaway region. The comment drew a sustained standing ovation from the crowd.
President Putin railed against what he saw as Western “double standards” with regard to recognizing Crimea. He singled out the United States for its policies of foreign intervention since the end of the Cold War.
“Our Western partners, especially the USA, believe that they can decide for the world, that they can decide other people’s fate,” he said. ” Look at Belgrade. At the end of the twentieth century. Then Afghanistan, Libya. Those nations were tired, but the U.S. cynically used that.”
He referred to the American principle of “freedom” and asked rhetorically, referring to Sunday’s independence referendum, “But what about the free will of Crimeans? Isn’t that of the same value?”
Putin also blasted NATO’s expansion onto what he called “our native lands.” He slammed NATO’s plans for a missile defense shield, which Russia fears is aimed at its nuclear arsenal, and criticized the West for operating around the United Nations whenever it was convenient.
Putin suggested he would not move into eastern Ukraine, which is home to mostly pro-Russian population. “Russia does not want to split Ukraine. Ukraine must retain its territorial integrity.” But he quickly pointed to the country’s Russian-speaking residents and said that “Russia will always protect their interests.”
After the speech, Putin signed a treaty Putin signed a treaty with Crimean officials paving the way for the region’s annexation by Russia. Russian lawmakers are expected to ratify the treaty later this week.