Home / world / Crimea bridge to Russia opened by Vladimir Putin, who drove giant development truck in highway check

Crimea bridge to Russia opened by Vladimir Putin, who drove giant development truck in highway check

MOSCOW — Russian President Vladimir Putin drove a big development truck Tuesday to highway check the much-anticipated bridge linking southern Russia and the Crimean peninsula. Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014.

The 11.Eight-mile bridge, which took two years to construct and value $three.6 billion, is Putin’s challenge to point out that Crimea has joined Russia for good. Transportation hyperlinks to Crimea deteriorated after each the Ukrainian and Russian militaries arrange checkpoints into the peninsula and trains crossing the Ukrainian mainland have been canceled.

The Ukrainian authorities reacted to the opening with anger. President Petro Poroshenko lambasted the bridge as “one more piece of proof of the Kremlin ignoring worldwide legislation” and “an try and legitimize the non permanent occupation of the Crimean peninsula.”

Russian President Vladimir Putin drives a Kamaz truck throughout a ceremony opening a bridge to attach the Russian mainland with the Crimean peninsula throughout the Kerch Strait, Might 15, 2018.

Alexander Nemenov/Pool through Reuters

Poroshenko instructed CBS Information correspondent Holly Williams in an interview broadcast earlier this month that his nation is the entrance line in a brand new Chilly Battle with Russia.

“They need to have Soviet Union again,” Poroshenko stated, including that he believes Putin, who was sworn in Might 7 for his fourth time period as president, desires to reconquer Ukraine and rebuild the “Russian Empire.”

On Tuesday, Putin traveled to southern Russia to examine the development website and to steer the opening ceremony for the bridge. After receiving a briefing from the development agency — owned by his childhood pal Arkady Rotenberg, who has been topic to U.S. sanctions — Putin jumped into an orange Kamaz truck with two engineers to steer a number of dozen vehicles throughout the span.

“Let’s hit the highway!” he stated within the cabin earlier than driving off.

Putin annexed Crimea in March 2014 following a swiftly known as native vote. The European Union and the US imposed sanctions on Russia for the transfer. Solely a handful of Russia’s staunchest allies like Venezuela and Syria have acknowledged Crimea as a part of Russia.

TV host Andrei Kondrashov, who was chairman of Putin’s victorious re-election marketing campaign, this yr described the bridge as “another reason for Russians to be proud.”

Tuesday’s check drive took a little bit beneath 20 minutes and was lined reside by Russian state tv. Reporters and cameras have been stationed at a number of spots alongside the route. One reporter hailed the bridge for example of “heroism of the employees.”

© 2018 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. This materials will not be printed, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Related Press contributed to this report.

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