NATO Calls on Russia to Return Control Over Crimea to Ukraine
The Alliance reiterated its readiness to address Russia's illegal actions in Ukraine in the way of support of sanctions
Photo North Atlantic Treaty Organization
North Atlantic Alliance released a statement, where the Alliance urged Russia to return control over the Crimean peninsula to Ukraine, claiming its unwavering position towards consideration of the act of annexation in 2014 as a breach of international law.
“We strongly condemn this act, which we do not and will not recognize,” said in the statement.
NATO also expressed its deep concern of the human rights abuses and violations being carried out by the Russian de-facto authorities in illegally annexed Crimea against Ukrainians, the Crimean Tatars, and members of other local communities.
The Alliance called on Russia to put an end to all acts of violations, to release Ukrainian political prisoners and hostages, and to grant international monitoring organizations access to Crimea.
“Any attempts to legitimize or normalize the illegal and illegitimate annexation of Crimea must end, including the automatic imposition of Russian citizenship, forced population movements, conscription in the armed forces of the Russian Federation, and illegal holding of Russian election campaigns,” said the statement.
NATO considers Russia’s military attack against Ukrainian ships and naval personnel near the Sea of Azov and the Kerch Strait in November 2018 is part of the larger pattern of Russian aggressive actions in the region, while calling for the unconditional release of detained sailors and the return of the captured vessels, as well as to ensure the unhindered access to Ukrainian ports in the Azov Sea.
NATO also condemns Russia’s ongoing and wide-ranging military build-up in Crimea, and is concerned by Russia’s efforts and stated plans for further military build-up in the Black Sea region.
The Alliance reiterated its readiness to address Russia’s illegal actions in Ukraine by the way of supporting sanctions.
“There can be no return to ‘business as usual’ until there is a clear, constructive change in Russia’s actions that demonstrate compliance with international law and its international obligations and responsibilities,” the Alliance stated.
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