The Crimean Bridge has become one of the reasons for extending the economic sanctions of the European Union against Russia, stated the Head of the European Council, Donald Tusk after the EU-Ukraine Summit.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko also took part in the negotiations with the leaders of the European Union at the meeting that took place in Brussels. “The sanctions made the Kremlin pay a high price, and they will continue to pay,” the President said after Summit.
Earlier, when officially commenting on the construction of the Bridge across the Kerch Strait, the European Union called it a violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty. “The construction of the Bridge is aimed at further forcing Russia’s integration of illegally annexed Crimea and increasing its isolation from Ukraine, of which it is a part,” the EU stated in May.
On July 5, the European Council voted unanimously to extend sectorial sanctions against Russia. The restrictions were originally to expire on July 31, 2018 but the new expiration date is now January 31, 2019.
After the decision of the European Union, Kyiv called on the imposition of sanctions against the builders of the Crimean Bridge.
The construction of the Crimean Bridge began in 2016. It is 19 kilometers long and connects the Crimean and the Taman peninsulas. The cost of the construction is more than 228 billion rubles or about $3 billion. The bridge was opened to motorists in May 2018 but the railway section is still under construction and will likely be launched next year.