US statements about the admissibility of possible Ukrainian strikes on Crimea demonstrate an escalation course. Russia will find a way to prevent the implementation of these threats, said Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov.
“Crimea is an integral part of the Russian Federation, and attempts to present the matter differently, to threaten it, is yet another confirmation of Washington’s irresponsible escalation course,” the diplomat said (quoted by RIA Novosti).
Earlier today, Russian Ambador to the United States Anatoly Antonov accused Washington of “stirring up the flames of the conflict.” According to him, the United States “blessed” Kyiv for attacks in Crimea. The diplomat warned the White House “against frivolous judgments” on the peninsula, stressing that possible strikes on the territory of Crimea would be regarded by Moscow as an attack on any other subject of the Russian Federation.
On the eve of May 21, US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan said that the United States does not limit Ukraine in strikes “on territories within its internationally recognized borders.” The White House stressed that they consider Crimea to be Ukrainian territory.
Crimea became part of Russia in 2014 after a referendum. According to its results, 96.77% of voters in the Republic of Crimea and 95.6% in Sevastopol were in favor of joining Russia. At the same time, the Ukrainian authorities did not recognize the results of the vote and the entry of Crimea into the Russian Federation and repeatedly announced their intention to “return” the peninsula, including by military means.