Russia says West, Ukraine need not worry about troops near border

Photo: Russia says West, Ukraine need not worry about troops near border / Other News

Russia sought on Wednesday to ease concerns in Kiev and the West over the presence of troops near the border with Ukraine and denied it was considering invading eastern Ukraine, Reuters reported.

"The United States and Ukraine have no reason to be worried," the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement. "Russia has stated many times that it is not carrying out any unusual or unplanned activity on its territory near the border with Ukraine that would be of military significance."

A change of power took place in Ukraine on Feb.22.

The Verkhovna Rada (parliament) ousted President Viktor Yanukovych from the power, changed the constitution and scheduled presidential elections for May 25. Yanukovych said that he was forced to leave Ukraine under the threat of violence, and he remains the legally elected head of state. A number of provinces in eastern and southern Ukraine, as well as the Crimea did not recognize the legitimacy of the Rada and decided on possibility of holding a referendum on the future fate of the regions.

The vast majority of residents of Crimea - 96 percent - voted to secede from Ukraine and rejoin Russia, in a referendum held March 16.

With the exception of Russia most countries refused to recognize the referendum and its results.

On March 18 Russia and Crimea signed an agreement on Crimea as well as Sevastopol city joining the Russian Federation.

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