Support The Moscow Times!

EU Sanctions 6 Russian Firms Over Crimea Bridge

The Crimean bridge / most.life

The European Union has levied sanctions on six Russian companies involved in the construction of a bridge connecting mainland Russia to the annexed Crimean peninsula.

The $3.6 billion bridge, built by a contractor owned by President Vladimir Putin’s childhood friend Arkady Rotenberg, was unveiled in May in a move to integrate the peninsula into Russia. Rotenberg was among the first Russian businessmen to be put under Western visa bans and asset freezes after Moscow’s annexation of Crimea from neighboring Ukraine in 2014.

The European Council said it has frozen the assets of six entities involved in the Crimean bridge’s construction, including two companies owned by Rotenberg — Mostotrest and Stroygazmontazh.

“Through their actions they supported the consolidation of Russia's control over the illegally annexed Crimean peninsula, which in turn further undermines the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of Ukraine,” the European Council said Tuesday.

Other companies to be hit by the latest EU sanctions include a Stroygazmontazh subsidiary, a St. Petersburg-based construction firm, a shipyard involved in railway construction and a contractor that built a highway over the bridge.

Speaking in Crimea on Monday, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said the annexed peninsula had completed the “unprecedented” task of being integrated into Russia’s legal, infrastructural and economic space.

“You can say that the most difficult stage has passed. We’ve entered into a more relaxed and planned mode of operation,” he said at a cabinet session in Sevastopol.

Reuters contributed reporting to this article.

Read more

Independent journalism isn’t dead. You can help keep it alive.

The Moscow Times’ team of journalists has been first with the big stories on the coronavirus crisis in Russia since day one. Our exclusives and on-the-ground reporting are being read and shared by many high-profile journalists.

We wouldn’t be able to produce this crucial journalism without the support of our loyal readers. Please consider making a donation to The Moscow Times to help us continue covering this historic time in the world’s largest country.