Pro-Moscow leader of Ukraine’s autonomous Crimea region Sergey Aksyonov has asked Russian President Vladimir Putin for help to ensure peace.
A Kremlin source said it would “not leave unnoticed” the request from Sergiy Aksyonov.
Meanwhile President Barack Obama warned Moscow against intervention after mysterious troop movements.
Ukraine’s interim PM Arseniy Yatsenyuk accused Russia of seeking to provoke an escalation.
Arseniy Yatsenyuk was speaking at the first meeting of his cabinet, installed after the overthrow of President Viktor Yanukovych. The new Defense Minister, Ihor Tenyukh, accused Russia of “recently” deploying 6,000 extra soldiers to Ukraine.
Sergey Aksyonov, 41,who leads the main pro-Russian party in Crimea, was elected prime minister of Crimea by the region’s parliament this week in an emergency session, replacing Anatoliy Mohylyov.
In the same vote, the parliament called a referendum on the status of Crimea, a region dominated by ethnic Russians.
The Crimean prime minister has brought forward the vote to March 30, from May 25 – the date of Ukraine’s early presidential election.
Sergey Aksyonov’s election was not approved by the new authorities in Kiev, who traditionally appoint the prime minister of Crimea, in consultation with the regional parliament. He also refused to recognize Ukraine’s new government.
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