Russia is aware that possible provocations may be prepared against the Russian Black Sea Fleet in Ukraine, Moscow's UN envoy Vitaly Churkin said.
"Information is being received that new provocations are being prepared, including those targeting Russia's Black Sea Fleet on the territory of Ukraine," he said at a UN Security Council meeting on Ukraine, which was called at Russia's initiative.
Vitaly Churkin has said that Viktor Yanukovych asked Russian President Vladimir Putin to send troops across the border to restore order on the territory of Ukraine.
"I, as the legitimately elected president of Ukraine, address President Putin with a request to deploy the Armed Forces of Russia to restore the rule of law on the territory of Ukraine," Churkin quoted Yanukovych's message during a UN Security Council session. Yanukovych's letter is dated March 1, 2014, he added.
Russians hold rallies in support of and in protest against sending troops to Ukraine.
Why is the Crimean port of Sevastopol still the base of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet, 23 years after the break-up of the Soviet Union? And what is its historical and military significance to Russia?