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Live Blog: Ukraine In Crisis (Archive)

Ukrainian acting Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk (right) welcomes U.S. Vice President Joe Biden before their meeting in Kyiv today.
10:52 28.3.2014
Important news this morning from Crimea.
The de facto government of the Ukrainian Black Sea peninsula of Crimea -- which was the subject of an internationally unrecognized annexation by Russia earlier this month -- has adopted a moratorium on the distribution and privatization of public land.

Rustam Temirgaliyev, deputy prime minister of the Russian-backed government, made the announcement Friday on his Facebook account.

He said the moratorium will last until the government works out a plan for the "territorial development of the Republic of Crimea" as ordered by Moscow.

The peninsula's Crimean Tatar minority was deported by Josef Stalin in 1944 and their property was seized.

They have been returning since the late 1980s, with thousands of them squatting on disused public land.

Temirgaliyev said the draft territorial-development plan will be ready by April 25.
10:55 28.3.2014
The UN last night passed a resolution on the "territorial integrity of Ukraine," declaring Crimea's recent secession vote invalid. Now Russia has condemned it.
Russia's Foreign Ministry has issued a statement condemning the adoption of a resolution "On the Territorial Integrity of Ukraine" by the United Nations General Assembly.

The ministry posted the statement Friday, saying that the March 27 resolution was "counterproductive" and "will only complicate efforts to regulate the internal political crisis in Ukraine."

The statement criticized the "deep interference of a number of Western countries in Ukraine's affairs," which it said has led to a breakdown of the rule of law and massive human rights violations.

The statement said the UN resolution -- which passed by a vote of 100 to 11, with 58 abstentions -- was an attempt by the West to pass blame for the situation onto Russia.

The General Assembly resolution is nonbinding, but is considered a reflection of world opinion.
10:59 28.3.2014
Our news desk has a longer piece on the fears of the Moldovan prime minister that Russia's annexation of Crimea "might raise expectations" in the smoldering separatist republic of Transdniester.
11:05 28.3.2014
11:39 28.3.2014
11:50 28.3.2014
A joke published in "Ostrov" (The Island), a pro-Ukrainian news site in the largely pro-Russian city of Donetsk:

-- Tell me, Monya, was there a referendum in Crimea?
-- There was.
-- And what was the result?
-- 97 percent supported reunification with Russia.
-- And why did this 97 percent want to reunify with Russia so much?
-- Because they were being harrassed by the remaining 3 percent.
-- What are you talking about?
-- What, you doubt it? Don't. After all, in Russia there are also a lot of Russians, and all of their problems there are because of the Jews.
12:45 28.3.2014
12:45 28.3.2014
12:55 28.3.2014
Deposed Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych has resurfaced and called on Ukraine to hold a national referendum on "the status of every region that comprises Ukraine."
The Russian news agency ITAR-TASS said Friday it had received a written statement from Yanukovych calling for the referendum.

Yanukovych fled Ukraine in February and has been in Russia since then. Moscow considers him the legitimate head of the country.

Yanukovych said the Ukrainian government's plan to hold a presidential election in May could destabilize the country and only a national referendum can preserve Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity. Yanukovych called the current authorities in Ukraine unconstitutional and said the situation amounts to "anarchy."

He also asked the Party of Regions to remove him as honorary chairman and to cancel his membership in the party.
13:15 28.3.2014

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