Tymoshenko urges EU to take strong action on Crimea

Leading Ukrainian politician Yulia Tymoshenko has called for Europe to take strong action over Crimea's attempt to join Russia, warning that otherwise Moscow would move to take over the rest of Ukraine and destabilise the continent.

"If we allow Russia on March 16 to hold a referendum at gunpoint, on the annexation of Crimea, we will lose Ukraine, we will lose not only Ukraine but stability in the whole world"; Tymoshenko said.

Ukrainian opposition politicians Yulia Tymoshenko and Vitali Klitschko.
Ukrainian opposition politicians Yulia Tymoshenko and Vitali Klitschko. Credit: REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett

Ukraine opposition leader Vitali Klitschko, who joined her at a conference in Ireland, said he was hopeful for the future of his homeland.

"We are European geographically, historically and mentally also European, unfortunately we are far away from European standards of living. Despite all of that, we are hopeful and we want to become part of Europe", he said.

Read: Ukraine's richest man tells ITV News the country should remain united

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Russian troops 'opened fire during military post takeover'

Russian troops opened fire during a takeover of a Ukrainian military post in Crimea but no one was injured, news agency Interfax reports.