MOSCOW, March 12 Crimea will soon take ownership
of Ukrainian state companies on its territory, its first deputy
prime minister said on Wednesday, pushing forward with steps to
cement the region's independence before a referendum on joining
Crimea, a southern Ukrainian region which is home to the
Russian Black Sea fleet, will vote on Sunday on whether to join
Russia. Since pro-Russian separatists took control of the
regional parliament almost two weeks ago, it has declared Crimea
part of the Russian Federation.
At a news conference broadcast on Russian television, Rustam
Temirgaliev said: "In the coming days the transfer is being
prepared ... for a series of assets, belonging to the Ukrainian
state, which are located on the territory of Crimea."
He said energy company Chornomornaftohaz and the state
railway company would be included, along with several resorts
owned by ministries in Kiev.
"The property of private companies and private individuals
remain the property of these entities," he said, adding that
owners should re-register their property under Russian law.