Polish Foreign Ministry condemns Russia's construction of bridge across Kerch Strait
The Polish Foreign Ministry has criticized Russia for the construction of the bridge across the Kerch Strait without the consent of the Ukrainian side and calls on Russia to refrain from further violation of Ukraine's territorial integrity and independence.
"The construction of the so-called Crimean bridge, which has been carried out by the Russian Federation without permission of the Ukrainian side and contrary to a position adopted by the UN General Assembly, represents yet another clear violation of the principles of international law," the ministry said in a statement on May 16.
It also noted that such actions by Russia run counter to the assurances of commitment to a peaceful resolution of the conflict with Ukraine which have been repeatedly made by members of the Russian administration.
"We urge the Russian side to refrain from further violations of Ukraine's territorial integrity and independence," the statement reads.
The Polish Foreign Ministry recalled that in UN General Assembly Resolution 68/262, adopted on March 27, 2014, the international community dismissed the so-called independence referendum in Crimea as illegal, thereby expressing its support for Ukraine's sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity within the borders recognized so far.
As reported, on May 15, Russian President Vladimir Putin took part in the opening of the traffic on a road and rail bridge that connects the Crimean peninsula with the mainland part of the Russian Federation.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko stated that despite Russia's attempts to legitimize the temporary occupation of the Crimean peninsula, Ukraine will continue to consistently defend its positions in international courts, including a petition for the illegal erection of the Kerch bridge.
Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman expressed confidence that Russia would answer for this illegal construction.
The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry stated that Ukraine would work to expand sanctions against individuals involved in the illegal construction of a bridge across the Kerch Strait.
NATO condemned the opening of the Kerch bridge and regarded it as another violation of Ukraine's sovereignty.