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Mejlis Vice Chairman: Active Pro-Ukrainian Movement Needed in Crimea


Kyiv, 4 April 2014 – Nariman Jelyal, Vice Chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People, spoke about the current situation in Crimea during a live broadcast at Ukrainian Crisis Media Center: “Crimea is already being mastered by the authorities of the Russian Federation. The assets are being actively redistributed – real estate, forest resources, gas deposits etc.”. He added that many everyday problems for ordinary people are arising, for example, pensions and salaries of civil servants in fact decreased due to RUB currency rate difference. Mr. Jelyal is also concerned about insufficient capacity of Kerch ferry crossing for providing the peninsula with essential commodities.

Vice Chairman of the Mejlis also said that “new draft of the Constitution is currently being prepared not by deputies, but by Russian specialists to be reviewed by the State Council of the RF on April, 10th. I think that the deputies will vote for it unanimously, which will actually imply the ultimate annexation of Crimea to the Russian Federation”.

Due to changes on the peninsula, Nariman Jelyal explained the reasoning behind the recent Mejlis decision allowing representatives of the Crimean Tatars to be part of executive authorities of Crimea: “This decision caused a mixed reaction even among the Crimean Tatars. But now you have to live in Crimea to understand the whole situation. Today everything is changing dramatically and new rules of the game are being established. And if we do not influence these processes, we will be out of game and ultimately lose, – he commented. – Crimean Tatars are in a difficult situation now: most of them are extremely unhappy with what is happening and what will happen in Crimea, the majority of them are pro-Ukrainian. But a lot of people have come to the conclusion that there is a little hope that Crimea will become the part of Ukraine again in the nearest future, so they say, you have to adapt to the current situation. Although there are those who believe that the international community will press on Russia and Ukraine will take some actions to regain Crimea”.

Mr. Jelyal encouraged to form an active pro-Ukrainian movement in Crimea in order “not to lose the connection with Ukraine and make it stronger”. He also believes that Crimea residents will wish to rejoin the successful Ukraine, which will follow the European way of development, particularly with regard to future deterioration of the socio-economic situation in Crimea within the RF: “It has already become clear that real actions of Russia are not as tempting as their (Russian) earlier promises. We anticipate a huge complex of problems and people’s moods are changing”.

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