The day after he was given command of the Ukrainian navy Admiral Denis Berezovski has refused to move his ships out of the Ukrainian base in Sevastopol, instead handing over his headquarters and vessels to the pro-Russian administration that has taken power in Crimea.
“I, Berezovsky Denis Valentinovich, swear allegiance to the residents of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, the heroic city of Sevastopol. I swear to obey the orders of the chief commander of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, of the city of Sevastopol, orders approved by commanders of military units. In accordance with the military charter, I swear to do my military duty, to bravely protect the lives and freedom of the residents of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol,” he announced on Russian television.
The government of Ukraine immediately charged him with treason. Pro-Russian forces are now extending their control in Crimea, and surrounding one Ukrainian military base with armour, troops and heavy machine guns.
The troops are using lorries with Russian numberplates and military weapons, indicating they have been deployed from Russian military bases, in contravention of international treaties covering Crimea and Ukrainian territory.