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Crimea Will Be Returned! VI International Age of Crimea Forum took place in Kyiv

February 26, 2020, on the occasion of the sixth anniversary of the beginning of the temporary occupation of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol, the VI International Age of Crimea Forum took place in Kyiv.

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyi, representatives of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, the Office of the President of Ukraine, the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine, the Majlis of the Crimean Tatar people, diplomatic missions and representations, international non-governmental organizations expressed their support for the Crimean Tatar people.

In his opening address, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyi said: “Our society can argue on many issues. But the fact that Crimea is Ukraine does not cause any quarrels or doubts. Ukrainians are one hundred percent united. Therefore, the return of Crimea is an indisputable part of our national idea”.

Representatives of the Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine also took part in the Forum. The most up-to-date intelligence information is the basis for the preparation of the decisions by the President of Ukraine, National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine on restoring the territorial integrity of our country and the future de-occupation of Crimea.

Since the beginning of Russia's occupation of the Crimean Peninsula 6 years ago, the Kremlin's approaches to the policy in the Black Sea region have not changed, and they could not change. The Kremlin sees the Black Sea first of all as an arena for demonstration of its military domination. During the years of occupation, we have had enough of open and closed intelligence information to confirm the fact that, despite the declarative statements of 2014–2015, Moscow has never considered Crimea from the point of view of development of its economic (industrial, agricultural, tourist or humanitarian) ) potential. Instead, the occupying authority has proven that it views Crimea solely within the concept of an “unsinkable aircraft carrier”, that is, turning the Peninsula into one large military base of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, which would not only make the Black Sea an “inland Russian lake” but also would exert military pressure on states located outside the region.

For the sixth year in a row, the occupying authority of the Russian Federation has been pursuing a policy of repression and harassment against citizens of Ukraine living in Crimea, violating their fundamental human rights and freedoms, in particular, the right to liberty and privacy, freedom of expression, thought, conscience, religion, peaceful assembly and association.

Despite the fact that the international community condemns the illegal occupation of the Crimean Peninsula and calls on the Russian Federation to restore the territorial integrity of Ukraine, the aggressor-state's actions continue to violate the world order.

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