Putin drives truck across new Russia-Crimea bridge
Putin drives truck across new Russia-Crimea bridge
Putin Drives Truck to Open New Russia-Crimea Bridge
15 May, 2018, 22:41
The president crossed the bridge driving the Kamaz truck.
The annexation of the peninsula in 2014 was condemned by Kiev and the West as an illegal land grab but applauded in Russian Federation.
"Such actions by Moscow fundamentally contradict the generally recognized norms and principles of worldwide law, grossly violate the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea of 1982 and bilateral treaty obligations to Ukraine", the ministry said in a statement on May 15 when Russian Federation officially opened the bridge.
Russian President Vladimir Putin was due to open a 19-kilometer bridge connecting southern Russia to the Crimean peninsula on Tuesday. In 2016 the U.S. imposed sanctions on Russian companies that were helping to build the bridge across the Kerch strait.
"The European Union continues to condemn the illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol by Russian Federation and will not recognize this violation of worldwide law", the European Union stressed. Many in Russia saw the move as restoring Moscow's rule over a historically Russian region.
Built at a cost of 223 billion roubles ($3.6 billion US), it will be the longest dual-purpose span bridge in Europe.
"Putin once more demonstrated that when he carries them out, even the most ambitious plans can be achieved", Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists Tuesday.
"Putin initiated this project himself". He was hit with sanctions by the USA for his proximity to Putin and by the European Union for being among those accused of undermining Ukraine's territorial integrity.
In July 2017, the bridge's arch for road traffic was installed. He inspected the bridge in March ahead of the presidential election he won, saying it was important to have the link to the Black Sea peninsula open for the summer tourist season. Up to 40,000 cars a day may cross the bridge travelling at a speed of up to 120 km per hour. The rail section is expected to be completed at the end of 2019.
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