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Published: Saturday March 22, 2014 MYT 9:10:02 PM
Updated: Saturday March 22, 2014 MYT 9:11:16 PM

Russian troops surround Crimea airbase, issue ultimatum

A Russian military officer (R) talks to Ukrainian Colonel Yuli Mamchur demanding Ukrainian servicemen to leave a military base in the Crimean town of Belbek near Sevastopol March 22, 2014. REUTERS/Vasily Fedosenko

A Russian military officer (R) talks to Ukrainian Colonel Yuli Mamchur demanding Ukrainian servicemen to leave a military base in the Crimean town of Belbek near Sevastopol March 22, 2014. REUTERS/Vasily Fedosenko

KIEV (Reuters) - Russian troops have surrounded a Ukrainian airbase in Crimea and issued an ultimatum to forces inside to surrender, the deputy commander of the base in Belbek, near Sevastopol, said on Saturday.

"The Russian troops at our aerodrome gave us an hour to surrender or they will start storming. We are going nowhere, let's see what this storming is," Oleg Podovalov told Reuters.

(Reporting by Aleksandar Vasovic, Gabriela Baczynska; Writing by Alessandra Prentice; Editing by Robin Pomeroy)

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