IT BEGINS: Russian drill flipped live, Rapid Intervention Force airlifted to Crimea

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Editor’s Note…

The Russian mode of operation was as predictable as a Swiss clock: Orchestrate pro-Russian rallies, send in spec-ops units disguised as local “pro-Russian elements” to take over airfields and strategic facilities, order your local proxy to “call for Russian help in restoring law and order”, then flip the massive military drill live and move into the country, defying Obama’s pathetic “warning”.

Below are some key excerpts from world media on the unfolding events.

(Don’t forget to check out Osnet’s Ukraine Archive)

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From The Voice of Russia

Following an appeal by the Prime Minister of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, Sergei Aksyonov, to the Russian President, Vladimir Putin, for assistance in securing peace and quiet in Crimea the Russian presidential administration said Russia would not disregard the request.

Earlier this Saturday, Sergei Aksyonov asked the Russian President to render assistance in ensuring peace and quiet in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea. Aksyonov also said he had subordinated all of the republic’s security agencies to himself.

Meanwhile, the cordoned-off area around the eastern and southern parts of the Crimean Council of Ministers building has been enlarged by one street block, so the closest one can now approach the building is 300 metres.

Police and Road Traffic Police prevent motor vehicles and pedestrians from entering the area, but allow street-cleaners to work there, and let everyone living in the nearby houses out.

The Simferopol streets are currently half-deserted, and almost no motor vehicles have been seen around.

The newly-chosen prime minister of the Ukrainian southern region of Crimea on Saturday called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to held restore “peace and calm” to the Black Sea peninsula, amid a standoff with the new authorities in Kiev.

“Taking into account my responsibility for the life and security of citizens, I ask Russian President Vladimir Putin to help in ensuring peace and calm on the territory of Crimea,” Sergiy Aksyonov said in an address quoted by local media and broadcast in full by Russian state television.

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From Debka File:

Thirteen giant Ilyushin-76 (NATO codenamed IL-76 Candid) air transports flew into the Crimea Friday night, Feb. 28, and landed some 2,000 fresh Russian troops at a military airfield near Sebastopol.

debkafile’s military sources report the new intake were members of the Russian Rapid Intervention Force. They arrived as the UN Security Council in New York discussed the Kiev government’s protest against the Russian military invasion of Ukraine. Earlier, airline companies said Crimean airports had been closed to traffic following reports that armed Russian troops in uniform but without insignia had take control of the runways of Crimea’s two main airports at Simferopol and Sevastopol.

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From The Interpreter:

“Under the guise of military exercises, Russia has brought troops into the Autonomous Republic of Crimea. And not only have they seized the parliament of the Crimea, the Council of Ministers of the Crimea, they are trying to take civilian buildings under control, communications, and trying to block places where Ukrainian soldiers are based,” he said in an appeal to the nation.

“They are provoking us to military conflict. According to information from our intelligence, they are working out scenarios that are completely analogous to Abkhazia, when after provoking a conflict, they began annexation of territory,” the acting president emphasized.

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