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MOSCOW, May 10, 6:47 /ITAR-TASS/. A total of 50 lime trees forming an alley will be planted on Saturday outside Moscow during a solemn ceremony to commemorate Crimea’s reunification with Russia.
The lime tree alley will be located some 15 kilometers to the southeast of Moscow in the village of Orlovo and will be called the Crimean Alley.
“Laying the foundation to the alley is a tribute to one of the most important modern developments, which is Crimea’s reunification with Russia,” a project organizer said in an interview with Itar-Tass.
Well-known Russian political and public activists, actors, scientists and athletes will be among those planting the lime trees for the Crimean Alley. The solemn ceremony will be followed by various festivities and a concert.
The Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol, where most residents are Russians, refused to recognize the legitimacy of the new Ukrainian authorities, brought to power amid riots after a coup in February.
Crimea and Sevastopol adopted declarations of independence on March 11. They held a referendum on March 16, in which 96.77% of Crimeans and 95.6% of Sevastopol voters chose to secede from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation. The voter turnout stood at 83.01% in Crimea and 89.5% in Sevastopol.
Russian President Vladimir Putin signed the reunification deals on March 18. The deals were subsequently approved by both houses of Russia's parliament, the State Duma and the Federation Council. On March 21, he signed the federal constitutional law on accession of two new constituent members to the Russian Federation - the Republic of Crimea and the federal city of Sevastopol.
Work to integrate the Crimean Peninsula into Russia’s economic, financial, credit, legal, state power, military conscription and infrastructure systems is actively underway now that Crimea has become part of Russia.
In the Soviet Union, Crimea used to be part of Russia until 1954, when it was gifted to Ukraine by Soviet Communist Party leader Nikita Khrushchev.