17:30 26.02.2014

Crimean police ordered to prevent clashes at any cost

1 min read

The Crimean law enforcement agencies have been tasked with not provoking conflicts and doing whatever is necessary to prevent clashes with pro-Russian forces, Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said.

"All law-enforcement structures across the Crimea and Sevastopol have received from me and Valentyn Nalyvaichenko [the head of the Ukrainian Security Council] appropriate instructions: not to provoke a conflict or armed standoff with the civilian population at any cost," he told a press conference on Wednesday.

This is not "a position of weakness," he said. "This is the position of reason and the only one, with which a conflict can be solved," the acting minister said.

"A special group of Verkhovna Rada envoys led by (people's) deputy Andriy Senchenko" is working in the Crimea, he also said.

"I think, that way - through a dialogue - we shall achieve much more than with standoffs … I have instructed all law enforcers, from Simferopol to Sevastopol, to do everything to prevent clashes between radical pro-Russian forces and other radical forces which side with European integration or the Crimean Tatar people," the acting minister said.

All measures are in place to prevent any standoff in the Crimea, Avakov said.

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