Putin: Force 'last resort' in Ukraine

Updated: 2014-03-05 09:38

By Agencies in Sevastopol and Kiev, Ukraine (China Daily)

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Putin: Force 'last resort' in Ukraine

A woman looks through a damaged entrance door as pro-Russian demonstrators hold a rally outside the regional government building in Donetsk, Ukraine, on Monday. [Photo/Agencies]


Nov 21, 2013: President Viktor Yanukovych's government announces that it is abandoning an agreement to strengthen ties with the European Union and is instead seeking closer cooperation with Moscow. Protesters take to the streets.

Jan 22, 2014: Three protesters die during a confrontation between the police and demonstrators.

Jan 28: In concessions to the opposition, the prime minister resigns and Parliament repeals the anti-protest laws that set off the violence.

Feb 18: Protesters attack police lines and set fires outside Parliament after it stalls on a constitutional reform that would have limited presidential powers.

Feb 20: Hours after a truce is announced, violence resumes. Most of the total 82 deaths occur on this day.

Feb 21: Under a European-mediated plan, protest leaders and Yanukovych agree to form a new government and hold an early election. Parliament cuts presidential powers and votes to free Yanukovych's rival, Yulia Tymoshenko, from prison. Yanukovych flees Kiev after protesters take control.

Feb 22: Parliament votes to remove Yanukovych and hold new elections. Tymoshenko is freed and addresses tens of thousands on the Maidan.

Feb 24: Ukraine's interim government draws up a warrant for Yanukovych's arrest. Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev derides the new leaders in Kiev as "Kalashnikov-toting people in black masks".

Feb 26: Leaders of Ukraine's protest movement propose legislator Arseniy Yatsenyuk as prime minister. In Moscow, Putin orders major military exercises just across the border.

Feb 28: Ukraine says Russian troops have taken up positions at strategic locations on the Crimean peninsula. Parliament adopts a resolution demanding that Russia halt moves that undermine Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity. Acting president Oleksandr says he has put armed forces on full readiness because of the threat of "potential aggression".

March 1: Russian troops take over Crimea without firing a shot. The Kiev government and its Western supporters are powerless to react. US President Barack Obama calls Putin to demand the troops' withdrawal. - AP