Putin on Ukraine: 'This is an anti-constitutional coup'

Despite condemnation from the international community, Russian President Vladimir Putin may proceed with military action in the Crimean peninsula.
By Aileen Graef Follow @AileenGraef Contact the Author   |   March 5, 2014 at 11:13 AM
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MOSCOW, March 5 (UPI) -- Russian President Vladimir Putin held a press conference on Ukraine in the presidential palace outside of Moscow Tuesday and told reporters any military action will be legitimate.

"There can be only one assessment," said Putin of the events in Ukraine. "This is an anti-constitutional coup and an armed seizure of power."

Regarding the legitimacy of his actions, Putin said, "We believe that if we make a decision, if I make a decision to use armed forces, it will be legitimate, totally corresponding to the general norms of international law, because there was an appeal by the legitimate president, and according to our obligations, and in this case it coincides with our interests to protect those who we consider are closely linked to us."

Putin has been criticized by world leaders including U.S. President Barack Obama, who believes that Putin broke international law by threatening the sovereignty of the country of Ukraine.

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