World Bulletin/News Desk
A Crimean Tatar leader has appealed to U.S. President Barack Obama for help amid the "humanitarian and social catastrophe" gripping the Crimea region of Ukraine.
Refat Chubarov, chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People, asked for U.S. cooperation in a letter sent to President Obama on Saturday.
In the letter, Chubarov said a humanitarian and social catastrophe was threatening the homeland of the Crimean Tatar people, who make up around 12 percent of the region’s two million inhabitants.
Emphasizing the "large-scale movement of Russian troops" on Crimea’s streets, Chubarov said: "Military observers from the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe have been unable to reach Crimea for over three days. Armed people are stopping them at the entrance to Crimea."
Chubarov put two questions for Crimean residents - Crimean Tatar, Russians and Ukrainians - to President Obama.
"Who and when will stop the escalation of the situation in Crimea and avert a threat to the population of Crimea? Who and when will avert a threat of new ethnic cleansing that could occur in Crimea in case of violent conflicts, provoked by the military and their accomplices from the paramilitary organizations?" Churabov asked.
Chubarov requested Obama's cooperation and asked him "to be decisive for the sake of the peace and justice, and [in] protecting lives of hundreds of thousands of people living in Crimea."
Russia is reportedly increasing its military build-up in Crimea and tightening its control of the region despite calls from Western powers to stop. The Russian Armed Forces gained control of 11 border posts on Saturday and one more on Sunday.
The Ukrainian military says about 30,000 Russian soldiers are now in Crimea.Last Mod: 12 Mart 2014, 23:47