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    Crimea Leader Claims US DoS May Have Influenced Kiev in Plotting Crimea Sabotage

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    Crimean leader Sergei Aksenov said Thursday that the US State Department may have influenced Ukraine in attempting to carry out terrorist attacks in Crimea.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Wednesday, Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) said that it had eliminated a spy ring organized by the Ukrainian Defense Ministry in Crimea, which was preparing acts of sabotage on "critical and life-supporting elements of the peninsula's infrastructure." A FSB officer died during a shootout that ensued during the raid.

    "You see which path they [Kiev] picked… But I am sure that these are not their own actions and premises, they have the US State Department behind them because the Ukrainian authorities would not have the guts to carry out such activities," Aksenov said on the Rossiya 24 television channel.

    The US State Department said Wednesday that it was aware of the reports of the thwarted attacks and was in touch with Ukraine. US ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt said Thursday Washington had no evidence to corroborate the claims.

    The Ukrainian General Staff denied the claims, calling them a provocative act by Moscow.

    Russian President Vladimir Putin said that the attempt was a "very dangerous game" adding that Ukraine's authorities had resorted to terrorism instead of looking for peaceful solutions to the conflict in the east of the country.


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    Sergei Aksenov, United States, Russia, Crimea, Ukraine
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