Trucker Putin opens Russian bridge to annexed Crimea

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Zakharova said that previous reports by Western and Ukrainian media, alleging that the Crimean bridge construction "is a fake and maybe even a result of some kind of computer graphics", demonstrate that "all this flow of hoaxes just can not be trusted".

Ukraine has condemned the project, which was personally championed by Putin, saying construction has damaged the environment and that larger ships will be unable to get through to its ports on the Azov Sea.

The bridge that spans the Kerch Strait creates Russia's first land connection with Crimea and, which also ensures a physical affirmation of the region's incorporation into Russia's arms.

Putin said the completion of the bridge was a remarkable achievement that makes Crimea stronger and brings all Russians closer to each other. Some Russians are calling it "Putin's bridge", created to link Crimea into Russia's transport network.

Now the peninsula is hard to reach from southern Russian Federation with long queues of vehicles often forming to board ferries, which can not always run in winter storms, so the easiest way across is to fly.

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The bridge across the Kerch Strait has become the longest in Russian Federation. During World War II the occupying Nazis also began building a bridge, but abandoned the project.

Crimea is a popular destination for Russians during the summer and Putin said in March he would like to see the bridge open by the time the season arrives.

"This is an extremely important day from this point of view and in a practical sense and in symbolic terms".

A parallel bridge for rail transport should be ready by December 2019, the Russian authorities stressed.

The construction and installation of the bridge kicked off in February 2016. It is also created to withstand ice floes in winter. "Let me remind you, on my behalf to the Arbitration Tribunal of the UN Convention on the law of the sea was filed on protecting the sovereign interests of Ukraine, in particular, in connection with the illegal construction of the bridge Kerch", - said Poroshenko.

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