Putin opens Crimean Bridge

EPA  OLIVIER HOSLET

Russian President Vladimir Putin drove Kamaz truck across a new, controversial bridge to Crimea without wearing a seat belt - which is against the law in Russia, according to a reporter from The Atlantic.

The construction of the Crimean Bridge, connecting the Crimea and Russia's Kuban region, began two years ago.

At a ceremony broadcast live on state TV, Putin, dressed in blue jeans, was met by cheering workers on the Crimean side after driving the orange-coloured truck across the bridge in a small convoy of vehicles.

No toll will be collected from cars and trucks moving over the bridge, Starovoit added.

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.

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

The Crimean Bridge overtakes Lisbon's Vasco da Gama Bridge as the longest in Europe.

Flags to fly at half-staff for Peace Officers Memorial Day on Tuesday
Familia joined the New York Police Department in 2005 and was shot point blank a year ago in her auto while on duty in the Bronx. The city of Marshalltown is fortunate to have dedicated and compassionate public safety professionals serving in our community.

Putin, who was re-elected for a fourth Kremlin term in March extending his long rule, pledged to build more of "such projects" across Russian Federation.

This is said in a statement made by the European External Action Service on Tuesday.

Ukraine, which along with most of the worldwide community has not recognised Russia's annexation of Crimea, condemned the project. "Therefore, the opening of the Crimean Bridge is a landmark event in the life of the European community", the official told Pravda.Ru.

"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.

On Tuesday, Ukraine blasted Russian Federation for violating global law with the bridge's construction.

"This is an extremely important day from this point of view and in a practical sense and in symbolic terms". The bridge was completed six months ahead of schedule.

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