Verkhovna Rada Chairman Andrii Parubii told a briefing, Censor.NET reports citing the press service of the People's Front Party.
Parubii commented on MP Andrii Artemenko's proposal to lease Crimea to the Russian Federation in exchange for the Donbas de-occupation.
"I think Artemenko is not the one who is actually behind this campaign. I welcome the decision of Liashko's Radical Party faction to expel this person, and I believe it ('Artemenko's plan' - Ed.) is an element of a purposeful campaign launched in Ukraine and abroad to try to provide legal grounds or give a legitimate reason for the occupiers' presence in Ukraine's territory," the speaker said.
"On Feb. 20, when we were standing on the Maidan in front of the bullets, the first Russian spetsnaz started entering Crimea, and it is hard to imagine how it would have ended if the Maidan was defeated. The occupation began in Crimea and the de-occupation will also end there. Crimea will be liberated, it will be returned under the legitimate control while such provocations and attempts to persuade the Western partners that Ukraine seeks compromise on Crimea are not consistent with the reality," the Verkhovna Rada chairman said.
"Our position is clear and firm: the Russian invaders must leave both territories of the occupied Donbas and Crimea, and this stance of the Ukrainian authorities is going to remain unchanged," Parubii summed up.
As reported by The New York Times, Artemenko offered an alleged action plan to resolve the Russia-Ukraine conflict to Michael Flynn, the former U.S. president's national security adviser. The plan stipulates the withdrawal of all Russian forces from eastern Ukraine and the launch of an all-Ukrainian referendum to decide whether Crimea could be leased to Russia for a term of 50 or 100 years.