Putin Officially Opens Massive Bridge Linking Crimea To Russia

Russia-Crimea bridge to be opened by Vladimir Putin

Now he has taken on the role of trucker to unveil a new road-and-rail bridge linking Russian Federation to the annexed Crimean peninsula.

Ukraine said the move showed cynical disregard for worldwide law.

Putin dressed in jeans and a casual jacket was shown by Russian state television behind the wheel of a construction truck to drive 19 kilometers (12 miles) across the bridge, which links the Taman peninsula in southern Russia to Ukraine's Crimea, which was annexed by Moscow in 2014.

After driving a Kamaz truck for nearly 20 minutes, which was part of a column of vehicles that crossed the bridge for the first time, Putin considered that the entire country worked in its construction.

Putin thanked the organizers of the project, who put the interests of the state over those of particular groups, the sappers, ecologists, scientists and other sectors involved. This was written by the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko on his page in Facebook on Tuesday, may 15.

The construction of the bridge began in May 2015. "Particularly cynical is the fact that its discovery comes on the eve of the anniversary of the deportation of the Crimean Tatar people by the Stalinist regime", - wrote Poroshenko.




Some Russians are calling it "Putin's bridge", created to link Crimea into Russia's transport network.

The annexation of the peninsula in 2014 was condemned by Kiev and the West as an illegal land grab but applauded in Russian Federation.

A view of the new bridge linking Russian Federation and the Crimean peninsula prior to its opening ceremony near Kerch, Crimea, May 15, 2018.

The European Union also criticized what it called a fresh assault on Ukraine's territorial integrity. Russian Federation built the bridge in defiance of Ukraine, which said the move showed cynical disregard for worldwide law.

Many in Russia saw the bridge as a move toward restoring Moscow's rule over a historically Russian region.

Built at a cost of 228 billion rubles ($3.69 billion), the new structure connects the southern Krasnodar region with the Crimean city of Kerch, spanning a strait between the Black Sea and the Azov Sea. President Petro Poroshenko lambasted the bridge as "yet another piece of evidence of the Kremlin ignoring global law" and "an attempt to legitimise the temporary occupation of the Crimean peninsula".

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