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Crimea and the federal city of Sevastopol switch over to Moscow time

March 30, 2014, 1:55 UTC+3 SIMFEROPOL

Crimea lived by Kiev’s time from 1996 until March 30, 2014

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© ITAR-TASS/Alexander Rumin

SIMFEROPOL, March 30. /ITAR-TASS/. The Republic of Crimea and the federal city of Sevastopol have just switched over to the Moscow time. 

“This is our time. Crimea and Sevastopol are now constituent parts of Russia, and the transition of all clocks in the city to the Moscow time is symbolic. It’s going to be another step towards full re-unification with Russia,” Svetlana Amontyefa, a native of Simferopol, told Itar-Tass on Saturday.

Despite the fact that they will now have to wake up two hours earlier, the people of Crimea are sure they will get accustomed to living by Moscow time soon.

The tower clock at the Simferopol railway station, which was the first to be transferred to the Moscow time, has its own history: the clock-faces located from each side were manufactured at the Moscow clock-making plant in 1951. The clock’s mechanism is set in motion by 250-kilogram poises. The clock-faces are decorated with nine signs of the zodiac and three constellations.

Mechanical worker Oleg Ageyev told journalists that the technique of moving the clock hands was simple. “Guys just turn the gear-wheel which makes the hands move,” he explained.

Crimea lived by Kiev’s time from 1996 until March 30, 2014.

A referendum on Crimea’s status took place on the peninsula on March 16, 2014. Ninety-seven percent of the voters who took part in the plebiscite voted for Crimea’s re-unification with Russia. In the federal city of Sevastopol, 95.6 percent voted for joining Russia.

On March 18, Russia and the Republic of Crimea signed the Treaty on re-unification of the Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol with Russia. The Russian Constitutional Court unanimously recognized the treaty to be legal.

The Russian Federal Assembly (parliament) considered the documents promptly. Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law on the incorporation of two new regions - Crimea and the federal city of Sevastopol - into Russia on March 21.

The president also signed a decree on the formation of the Crimean Federal District.

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