Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE DEBATE

From Foe to Friend? Iraq: The makeover of Muqtada al-Sadr

Read more

FOCUS

France's newest political parties go to school

Read more

ENCORE!

Hugh Coltman serves up a New Orleans-inspired musical gumbo

Read more

PERSPECTIVE

'Macron sees high earners as key to getting the French economy moving again'

Read more

IN THE PRESS

'Shut Up and Drive': Saudi's paradoxical stance after female activists arrested

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

$2.3bn for two million songs: Sony buys majority stake in EMI

Read more

EYE ON AFRICA

Burundi approves new constitution allowing president to extend time in power

Read more

THE DEBATE

Populist takeover: Italy approves unprecedented coalition

Read more

FOCUS

Young Nicaraguans lead protests against President Ortega

Read more

NATO 'condemns' Russia bridge to Moscow-annexed Crimea

© POOL/AFP | A vehicle passes over the 19 km road-and-rail Crimean Bridge over the Kerch Strait and linking southern Russia to the Crimean peninsula on May 15, 2018, prior to the opening ceremony

BRUSSELS (AFP) - 

NATO on Wednesday denounced a new bridge linking mainland Russia to Moscow-annexed Crimea as "another violation" of Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity.

The Atlantic alliance echoed the European Union's earlier condemnation of the bridge, which Russian President Vladimir Putin drove a truck over on Tuesday.

"NATO condemns Russia's construction and partial opening of the Kerch Strait bridge between Russia and Crimea," NATO deputy spokesman Piers Cazalet said.

"Crimea is part of Ukraine and this bridge represents another violation of Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity," Cazalet said in a statement.

The bridge, which limits sea traffic to Ukrainian ports on the Azov Sea, amounts to "the infringement of its navigational rights in its territorial waters," he added.

"Russia continues to demonstrate a clear disregard for international law," Cazalet said, adding that NATO will not recognise Russia's 2014 annexation of Crimea.

Russian state television showed Putin dressed in jeans and a casual jacket sitting behind the wheel of a construction truck to drive across the bridge and officially open it.

The 29-member NATO is pursuing a dual-track policy towards the Kremlin of defence and deterrence coupled with an offer of dialogue.

Tensions between NATO and Russia are at levels not seen since the Cold War, including over Moscow's support for pro-Russian separatists in the conflict in eastern Ukraine.

© 2018 AFP