Translated by Ollie Richardson for Fort Russ
9th April, 2016
The situation on the border with Crimea is far from ideal. Here, in cooperation with volunteers from the Aidar and Azov battalions, Crimean Tatar activists operate who, after their leader Refat Chubarov’s meeting with the Turkish leadership, started to form a national military unit. At the same time the Turkish authorities were equipping these units, the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko personally took a ride on the frigate “Hetman Sahaidachny” in Istanbul and brought them new uniforms.
Now the situation on the border with Crimea is on the verge of a social explosion. The excesses of the Tatar youths, among which activists of the extremist Turkish organization “Grey wolves” are seen, get on the nerves of the region’s people. It came to the point that the leaders of the Majlis demanded the Ukrainian authorities allocate them a portion of the territory of the Kherson region to create their own enclave.
The news that Crimean Tatars will ask for the most “appetizing” areas near the black sea coast is not much of a surprise as it has already happened in Crimea. Meanwhile, the Genichesk, Kalanchak, and Chaplynka districts are undergoing attacks on representatives of local business, during which the blockades by the activists extort financial support for their activities.
Now the passion has begun to subside a bit due to the fact that the activities of the organizers of the blockade of Crimea went far beyond the legal framework and drew the attention of the police and also the world community. In the end, they were forced to remove their posts and join the border guards, the so-called “public control” over the movement of people and goods across the border.
However, this activity also cannot fool anybody. Currently, there is a rapid formation of Crimean Tatar units. The “Crimea” Battalion had been previously created. Despite the number of volunteers falling short of a fully-fledged division, the soldiers have already been in the area of the ATO.
Currently the head of the Mejlis, Mustafa Dzhemilev announced the formation of a new battalion called “Asker”. He does not hide the fact that he supports bloody acts and the destabilization of the situation in Crimea. Volunteers who have been recruited in this formation called themselves the “Suicide Bomber Battalion” because they assert that they are prepared to “help” their compatriots on the Peninsula.
Despite the statement of Petro Poroshenko that Crimea will be returned peacefully, on March 21st, Chubarov spoke about a military solution to the issue. In his words, the Crimean Tatar units will follow the advancing units of the Ukrainian troops and will bring order to the territory.