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March 09, 2014 11:44

Crimean speaker speaks on new Ukrainian administration's attempts to reach agreements with Crimea

MOSCOW. March 9 (Interfax) - The new administration of Ukraine has made attempts to reach agreements with Crimea, but the arguments of the people of Crimea were not heard, Volodymyr Konstantynov, chairman of the Supreme Council of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, said in the Russian State Duma deputies on Friday.

"Then [after attempts to use force] they started dialogue with us," Konstantynov said.

Konstantynov said Ukraine has asked Crimea: "What do you need, the people of Crimea?"

"They even said they would not mind it if there were Russian flags everywhere, saying that the main thing is that we should not aggravate our relations with Kyiv," Konstantynov said.

"They asked me as speaker what needed to be done to prevent the situation from exploding," Konstantynov said.

"I told them: 'Please don't replace the defense, security and law enforcement bloc: people will see it as the beginning of repression,'" Konstantynov said, adding that the people of Crimea were very hurt by the actions taken by Kyiv on the Berkut special task force and the Interior Ministry's internal troops."

"The next day, they began replacing the top officials," Konstantynov said.

"It became very clear that these people say one thing, but do a different thing. It's either there is an uncontrolled process going on or such is the position of this new administration," he said.

Konstantynov said the administration of Crimea has the support of the people of Crimea. "Our task is to transform this support into civilized decisions," he said.

Konstantynov told the State Duma administration: "Now the ball is on your side. We are holding a referendum: the people will make their decision, and you will make your decision, We need to make a historical decision on the future of Crimea, I hope, for centuries."

The Supreme Council of Crimea has made a decision on the inclusion of Crimea in the Russian Federation as a region of the Russian Federation. The issue will be addressed at the referendum scheduled to be held in Crimea on March 16.

av

(Our editorial staff can be reached at eng.editors@interfax.ru)

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