KIEV, September 8. /TASS/. The Ukrainian government has approved restrictive measures against 24 legal entities and six individuals involved in the construction of the Crimean Bridge, and is submitting them to the National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) for consideration, the press service of the Ministry for Reintegration of Uncontrolled Territories reports.
"The Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine has approved a package of sanctions against 24 legal entities and six individuals involved in the illegal construction and operation of the so-called bridge across the Kerch Strait and is submitting it to the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine for consideration," the statement says.
It is proposed to apply the sanctions for a period of five years. The sanctions against legal entities imply a ban on the use of their property on the territory of Ukraine, if there are any assets there, carrying out export-import operations, withdrawing capital from the country, as well as on fulfilling economic and financial obligations and licensed activities on the territory of Ukraine.
Individuals will be prohibited from entering the territory of Ukraine, as well as the disposal of property located on the territory of the country.
The ministry also recalled that after the approval of this decision at a meeting of the NSDC and its entry into force, the country's foreign ministry will inform the competent authorities of the EU, the USA, Canada and other states about it in order to consider the introduction of similar restrictive measures.
The next meeting of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine is scheduled for September 10, but the agenda of the meeting has not yet been made public.
The Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol, a city with a special status on the Crimean Peninsula, where most residents are Russians, refused to recognize the legitimacy of authorities brought to power amid riots during a coup in Ukraine in February 2014.
Crimea and Sevastopol adopted declarations of independence on March 11, 2014. They held a referendum on March 16, 2014, in which 96.77% of Crimeans and 95.6% of Sevastopol voters chose to secede from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation. Russian President Vladimir Putin signed the reunification treaties on March 18, 2014. The documents were ratified by Russia’s Federal Assembly, or bicameral parliament, on March 21.
Despite the absolutely convincing results of the referendum, Ukraine, the United States, and the European Union keep on refusing to recognize Crimea as a part of Russia.
On March 19, 2014, President Vladimir Putin instructed the Russian Transport Ministry to ensure the construction of a bridge across the Kerch strait both for cars and trains.
By June 2018, all the piles for the road and rail sections of the bridge were installed.
On May 15, 2018, the grand opening of the road section of the Crimean Bridge took place.
The next day, at 05:30 Moscow time, regular car traffic was launched.
On October 1, 2018, freight traffic was opened on the bridge.
On December 18, 2019, the construction of the railway part of the Crimean Bridge was officially completed, and on December 23, Vladimir Putin opened railway traffic on the Crimean Bridge, traveling from Kerch to Taman on a diesel train.
The 19-kilometer Crimean Bridge, the longest one in Russia and Europe, links the Taman Peninsula (Russia’s Krasnodar region) and the Kerch Peninsula (Crimea).