The first person killed in the recent unrest in Ukraine and Crimea is a Ukraine soldier, who was killed Tuesday. The soldier was killed in an attack on a military facility in the Crimean capital Simferopol, officials said.
The death of the soldier was considered “shocking,” said Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk. “The conflict is moving from a political one to a military one because of Russian soldiers. Today, Russian soldiers began shooting at Ukrainian servicemen and this is a war crime without any expiry under a statute of limitations,” he said.
Yatseniuk said that he was calling for a meeting of defense ministers from Britain, France, and, ironically, Russia, all of whom are parties to a 1994 agreement guaranteeing Ukraine's borders. Yatseniuk called on Russia to rethink its actions and avoid “escalating the conflict.”
The Ukrainian government continued to step up its defenses against a possible military invasion from Russia, reports said, as Yatensyuk warned that armed military conflict with Russia was still a possibility. On Tuesday afternoon, Russian president Vladimir Putin submitted his bill to annex Crimea for approval in the Russian parliament. The series of events leading to the bid has caused alarm as Western powers and media pundits discuss the possibility of another cold war - and as Putin continues to ignore sanctions from the US and European Union (EU).