“Crimea was, is, and will be our
territory,” said Defense Minister Ihor Tenyukh in a statement delivered at the
Ukrainian Crisis Media Center on March 17.
Former heavyweight boxing champion and leader
of the Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform Vitali Klitschko announced
that Ukrainian troops would remain at their bases, even after March 21, the end
of a peace treaty signed by the interior ministries of Ukraine and Russia.
In accordance with the March 16 peace
treaty, the Russian Interior Ministry promised to allow Ukrainian soldiers to
pass freely into and out of their bases, which Russian troops had surrounded for
more than two weeks. Tenyukh said that the Russian military had thus far
respected the terms of the treaty.