(NBC News) Today we could see Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich for the first time since he fled the country.
He’s expected to hold a news conference in Russia. And there’s concern Russia’s military may be poised to take over part of the country.
Officials here are warning Russia not to get involved, but there’s growing concern that Russia is doing just that.
It is still unclear what Viktor Yanukovich will say today to a nation divided.
There’s a transitional government setting up in the capitol of Kiev, but in Crimea, protesters want to break off and join Russia.
150-thousand Russian troops, hundreds of tanks, aircraft, and ships have lined up at the border.
Russia says it’s a pre-scheduled training exercise. Some Ukrainians think it’s a military invasion.
The U.S. is watching. “I expect Russia to be transparent about these activities and I urge them not to take any steps that could be misinterpreted or lead to miscalculation,” said Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel.
“So we will watch very carefully and very hopefully that Russia will join us in the effort to help shore up the economy, hold the country together and provide a road forward,” said Secretary of State John Kerry.
Armed men have taken over Crimea’s airport, and a Russian flag has been raised over the region’s parliament building.
With Yanukovich in hiding and a new government forming, the U.S. no longer considers him a legitimate ruler. “It’s hard to claim you’re leading a country when you abdicate your responsibilities and disappear,” said White House Press Secretary Jay Carney.
The U.S. is backing the new government, but it’s not clear who’s in charge.