Ukraine’s navy head swears allegiance to Crimea

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The newly appointed head of Ukraine’s navy has sworn allegiance to the Crimea region, in the presence of its unrecognised pro-Russian leader. Rear Admiral Denys Berezovsky was only made head of the navy on Saturday, as the government in Kiev reacted to the threat of Russian invasion.

Two explosions have been heard in Simferopol, Crimea’s capital, with no official details yet available.

Nato’s chief has asked Russia to withdraw its forces to its bases.

“We call on Russia to de-escalate tensions… to withdraw its forces to its bases and to refrain from any interference elsewhere in Ukraine,” Anders Fogh Rasmussen said, speaking in Brussels.

Ukraine was a “valued partner” for Nato and should be allowed to determine its own future, he said.

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