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vegassports-odds.com May 20, 2018


Putin Drives Truck to Open New Russia-Crimea Bridge

15 May 2018, 07:44 | Taylor George

EU sanctions five people for organising Russian elections in Crimea

Russian

Russian President Vladimir Putin is set to unveil Tuesday a highly symbolic bridge linking southern Russia to the Crimea, four years after the peninsula was annexed from Ukraine.

Russian state television showed Putin behind the wheel of a construction truck with workers on the almost 20-kilometer drive across the bridge, which aims to integrate Crimea with Russia's transportation network.

Known as the Crimean Bridge, it will be the longest not only in the country but also in Europe, overtaking the Vasco da Gama Bridge in Lisbon.

The construction of the bridge over the Kerch Strait between the Black and Azov seas started in 2015 following the incorporation of the former Ukrainian republic in 2014 and consequent deterioration of relations between Moscow and Kiev.

"The construction of the bridge, like any other actions of the Kremlin's occupying authorities, in no way can change the status of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol as an integral part of the territory of Ukraine in its internationally recognized borders", the statement said.

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The EU has imposed a range of sanctions over Russia's illegal annexation of Crimea in 2014, carried out in retaliation for Ukraine ousting its pro-Russian president in what Russia has condemned as a Western-backed coup.

Putin at the wheel of Kamaz headed the convoy of the vehicles and cargo equipment that made the first trip over the bridge.

Construction on the bridge to link Crimea with Russia's Krasnodar region began in February 2016.

The Kerch Strait Bridge will open to cars and public transport on Wednesday, May 16.

The railway bridge is not yet finished and has a deadline of the end of 2019.



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