What You Need To Know:
✔️ Crimean Tatars with self-formed paramilitaries blocking shipments of food and goods to Russian-annexed Crimea in a civil disobedience act;
✔️‘We welcome support of all groups including right-wing organizations as long as its non-violent';
✔️‘In long term the government will have to join and run the blockade if it is to succeed';
✔️ Trading with Crimea "is a trade made in blood".
Arsen Zhumadilov is an analyst at the Crimean Institute for Strategic Studies. A week ago Crimean Tatars started a blockade of shipments of foodstuffs and other goods into Russian-controlled Crimea because the government has been "pre-occupied with Donbass."
Zhumadilov said that trading with Crimea "is a trade made in blood" and the blockade should have happened a year and a half ago to protest Russian-annexation of Crimea and persecution of Crimea Tatars and other opponents of annexation.
Zhumadilov says that Refat Chubarov, chairman of the Crimean Tatar self-governing body the Mejlis, has welcomed all support for the blockade "provided it is peaceful." Right-wing nationalist group Right Sector has also been involved, raising question about their involvement and the extent of cooperation with the Crimean Tatar community.
Zhumadilov says the real test will come in two weeks with food stocks in Crimea sufficient until then. Long term he says it will have to be the the government that steps in to sustain the blockade.
Arsen Zhumadilov spoke with the Sunday Show's Ian Bateson and Christian Borys on September 27, 2015.