Home > News > World
Sunday March 16, 2014 MYT 1:00:03 AM
Sunday March 16, 2014 MYT 1:01:45 AM
KIEV (Reuters) - Ukraine's military scrambled aircraft and paratroops to confront Russian troops landing on a spit of land between Crimea and the mainland, defence officials said and the foreign ministry demanded their immediate withdrawal.
The border guard service said Ukrainian forces had taken up defensive positions on Arbatskaya Strelka, running parallel to the east of Crimea, now controlled by Russian forces. It said about 60 Russian troops had landed on the strip and begun digging in, assisted by three armoured personnel carriers.
Six Russian helicopters arrived with 60 more servicemen about two hours later outside the village of Strelkovoye. The border guard service said talks between the two sides established that the Russian servicemen were "guarding against possible terrorist acts" against a gas pumping station.
"At this time, there is no threat of confrontation," the Ukrainian border guard service said.
The defence ministry had earlier said troops dispatched to Arbatskaya Strelka had "immediately" repelled the incursion.
Ukraine's foreign ministry said the village had been occupied by Russian forces, though the border guards gave a different version. "The ministry is making public the Russian incursion and demands the immediate withdrawal of Russian armed forces from Ukraine's territory," it said.
Crimea is home to Russia's Black Sea Fleet under a post-Soviet deal signed with Ukraine. The peninsula has been under the control of Russian forces for two weeks.
Two main roads link Crimea to the mainland, at Armyansk in the west and Chonhar in the east. However, there is a third, minor road connection from the 120 km (75 mile) long Arbatskaya Strelka. Strelkovoye is 30 km (20 miles) south of the town of Henichesk on the Ukrainian mainland.
(Reporting Pavel Polityuk; Writing by Ron Popeski; Editing by Alastair Macdonald)
Islamic State blows up tower tombs in Syria's Palmyra - antiquities chief
Pakistani migrant dies in Hungary
About 40 migrants drown after dinghy deflates off Libya - IOM
Czechs, Slovaks open to corridor for migrants headed to Germany - ministers
Tragic boy’s picture galvanises migrant crisis
TalentCorp turns Malaysia’s brain drain to brain gain
Fun-filled Matta fair awaits visitors
Hamilton fastest as Mercedes have a blast at Monza
After Uber and Airbnb, meal-sharing sites under fire in France
Copyright © 1995-2015 Star Media Group Berhad (ROC 10894D)(Formerly known as Star Publications (Malaysia) Berhad)