|Capture of the Crimean Supreme Council|
|Part of the Annexation of Crimea by the Russian Federation|
Troops without insignia at the building of the Verkhovna Rada of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea
|Commanders and leaders|
(General commander of Russian forces)
(Russian special forces commander)
|Armed Forces of Ukraine|
|Casualties and losses|
The capture of the Verkhovna Rada of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea on 27 February 2014 is an episode of the Crimean crisis in which Russian armed forces without insignias took over the Crimean Parliament, leading to the Russo-Ukrainian War. The Crimean Prosecutor's Office considered the incident as a terrorist attack.
In February 2014, following the 2014 Ukrainian revolution that ousted the Ukrainian President, Viktor Yanukovych, the Russian leadership decided to "start working on returning Crimea to Russia" On February 25, a pro-Russian rally organized by the Crimean Front and Cossack organizations was held under the building of the Crimean Verkhovna Rada. The protesters shouted pro-Russian slogans and demanded separation from Ukraine by holding a referendum. Before the protesters came the Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada of the ARC Volodymyr Konstantinov, announcing the extraordinary session of February 26. The media reported that a question about the withdrawal of the Crimea from Ukraine could be put to the session, but Konstantinov denied such rumors, calling it the provocation of the "Makeevka team in the Crimean government".
On February 26, two events took place in parallel by the walls of the ARC Verkhovna Rada: a pro-Ukrainian rally organized by the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People, which gathered up to 10 thousand participants, and a pro-Russian rally of about 700 people, initiated by the party "Rus unity". Due to unsatisfactory security measures taken by law enforcement officers, there were fights between pro-Ukrainian and pro-Russian rally participants, resulting in the death of 2 people of the pro-Russian rally. The pro-Russian rally was pushed to the inner court of the Crimean Verkhovna Rada, and scheduled the day before parliament's session was canceled.
Course of events
On the morning of February 27, around 4:30, 2 groups of 10-15 armed men in military uniform without insignia entered the building of the Verkhovna Rada of Crimea and took control of it. Immediately after the capture, the attackers were barricaded indoors, having previously removed the small number of staff located in the middle. Crimean People's Deputy from the faction UDAR Serhiy Kunitsyn said that the building was captured by 120 highly trained personnel who have a large arsenal of weapons, including automatic weapons, machine guns and grenade launchers, which would allow them to defend themselves for a long time. Persons who seized the building described themselves as representatives of the self-defense of Russian-speaking citizens of Crimea, although the Mejlis leader and deputy of the Crimean parliament, Refat Chubarov, said that Russian people were in charge of these people; later it became clear that the operation was orchestrated by Russian special forces.
At 8:30, the chairman of the Council of Ministers of the Crimea Anatolii Mohyliov made an appeal to the inhabitants of Crimea, in which he informed them about the capture of the Verkhovna Rada of the ARC by unknown persons numbering about 50. At 9 o'clock Anatolii Mohyliov announced talks, but they did not have any result, because, according to Mohyliov, the unknown people refused to speak.
Valentyn Nalyvaichenko, the then head of the SBU, believes that there was no forceful capture of the ARC Verkhovna Rada, as the local Crimean authorities, including the police, voluntarily transferred control over the building and weapons.
- Chronology of events that took place under the walls of the Verkhovna Rada of the ARC on February 26, 2014, restored per minute // "The Crimean Prosecutor's Office", 02/26/2018
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