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Putin to travel to Crimea for a two-day tour

August 13, 2014, 2:08 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The Kremlin press service reported that on Wednesday the President would confer with members of the Security Council of the Russian Federation

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© ITAR-TASS/Alexei Nikolsky

MOSCOW, August 13. /ITAR-TASS/. Russia's President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday begins a two-day working tour of Crimea, where actually the entire leadership of the country will gather.

The Kremlin press service reported that on Wednesday the President would confer with members of the Security Council of the Russian Federation.

On Thursday, August 14, Putin is to meet in Crimea with members of the State Duma lower house of the Russian parliament. "The President is expected to have a frank talk with the parliamentarians on matters of current importance regarding the country's life," a press service official pointed out, emphasizing that "special attention is to be devoted to matters concerning practical party work in the present-day competitive environment".

Dmitry Medvedev, Prime Minister and Chairman of the United Russia party, Sergey Naryshkin, Speaker of the State Duma, the leaders of all House party factions and government ministers are to participate in the meeting.

Presidential press secretary Dmitry Peskov said the meeting with the President is to assemble the country's leading politically active officials of the country whom Putin will address in a big speech. According to Peskov, this is connected with Russia's internal political season starting in several weeks' time.

A State Duma source confirmed that House factions would arrive at the meeting with the President on the Peninsula almost in a body.

While in Crimea, Putin is also to meet with people prominent in the field of culture to discuss matters relating to the Republic's integration into the cultural environment of Russia. "The agenda is so deep and substantive that it encompasses various formats (of discussion) which do not substitute one another," Peskov explained.

The present tour is already a second visit by the Head of State to Crimea following the latter's reunification with Russia. On May 9, Putin watched a naval review and a flypast in Sevastopol where he arrived after reviewing the Victory parade in Moscow's Red Square.

In March of the current year, following a political crisis and an unlawful change-over of power in Ukraine, the Supreme Council of Crimea and the Sevastopol City Council adopted a declaration of the Republic's independence.

A referendum was held in Crimea and Sevastopol. As a result of the referendum, 96.77% of the Republic's electorate and 95.6% of Sevastopol constituents voted in favour of a reunification with Russia. On March 18, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed treaties on the admission of the Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol to Russia. The Treaties were subsequently endorsed by the State Duma and the Federation Council upper house of parliament.

A large amount of work is being done for the integration of the Republic of Crimea and the Federal city of Sevastopol into the economic, political and legal field of Russia: within a short period of time, the rouble fully replaced the hrivna; wages and pensions on the Peninsula are being brought up to Russia's average level; a judicial system and government bodies have been formed; Russia's banks begin to operate there; cellular communication operators begin to move in, and so on.

A project is being worked out to build a bridge across the Kerch Strait to supplement the existing ferry link between Crimea and Krasnodar Territory.

On August 11, the Russian government approved a Federal purpose-oriented programme for the Peninsula's socio-economic development in a period until the 2020 target year, with financing amounting to 681 billion roubles.

One of significant events was the signing of a Decree by the Russian President in April about rehabilitating the Crimean Tatar population and other peoples of Crimea, who had been subjected to deportation in the 1940s.

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