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G-7 Warns Russia over Crimea
Mar 14, 2014

G-7 leaders warned Russia to cease all efforts to change the status of Crimea or face further action, individually and collectively. The statement issued by the White House in Washington came in response to Crimea's parliament endorsing moves to join Russia and making preparations for a referendum among local residents.

The G-7 group includes Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States, the European Council and the European Commission. In 1998 it added Russia to form the G-8.

The G-7 leaders said they would not recognize the outcome of the referendum, which they said would have no legal effect.

It would be a deeply flawed process which would have no moral force because of the presence of presumed Russian troops on the Ukrainian Black Sea peninsula. Instead, the leaders called on Russia to withdraw its forces in Crimea, begin talks with Ukraine, and allow international observers into the region.

The G-7 said, aside from affecting Ukraine's territorial integrity, an annexation of Crimea could have grave implications for the legal order that protects the unity and sovereignty of all states. Such a move would violate five different bilateral and international agreements. G-7 urged Russia to join us in working together through diplomatic processes to resolve the current crisis.

Crimea is set to hold a referendum on coming Sunday on whether to split Ukraine and join Russia or seek greater autonomy as part of Ukraine.

As Ukraine’s Acting Prime Arseniy Yatsenyuk arrived in Washington for a meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama, US House of Representatives condemned Russia’s aggression against Ukraine and called for sanctions against Russia.

The USS Truxtun, a US guided-missile destroyer, began a naval drill with a Bulgarian frigate and three Romanian vessels in the Black Sea after the nearby Crimean Peninsula proclaimed independence from Ukraine.

NATO said it had deployed two AWACS surveillance planes to fly over Poland and Romania to monitor activity in the air and on the sea around Ukraine. The U.S. has also deployed additional fighter planes to Poland and Lithuania.

Ukraine’s First Deputy Prime Minister Vitaliy Yarema said that the Ukrainian army had been placed in maximum operational readiness, and all-Ukraine military exercises have started. Russia is also holding a large-scale war drill involving 3,500 paratroopers and 36 warplanes.


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