Putin drives across repaired bridge to Crimea in bid to boost Russian morale

ukraine
Putin Drives Across Repaired Bridge To Crimea In Bid To Boost Russian Morale Putin Drives Across Repaired Bridge To Crimea In Bid To Boost Russian Morale
Mr Putin took the wheel of a Mercedes to drive across the bridge linking Russia’s mainland with the peninsula, which Moscow annexed from Ukraine in 2014. Photo: PA Images
Share this article

By Associated Press Reporters

Russian president Vladimir Putin has tried to boost Russian morale by driving across a bridge to Crimea that a truck bomb damaged in October.

He took the wheel of a Mercedes to drive across the bridge linking Russia’s mainland with the peninsula, which Moscow annexed from Ukraine in 2014.

Like other western carmakers, Mercedes halted sales of vehicles to Russia and stopped production at its assembly factory near Moscow after the start of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Mr Putin did not try to make a political point by driving the Mercedes and not a Russian-made Auris sedan, saying the president just used an available car.

Russian president Vladimir Putin and deputy prime minister Marat Khusnullin visiting the bridge connecting the Russian mainland and Crimean Peninsula over the Kerch Strait (Mikhail Metzel/Sputnik/Kremlin Pool Photo/AP)

While driving, Mr Putin discussed the repairs of the Crimean Bridge with Marat Khusnullin, a deputy prime minister in charge of the project, an exchange broadcast by Russian television.

Advertisement

The president also spoke to workers involved in restoring the 12-mile bridge, which has been the main conduit for ferrying supplies to Crimea, which has served as a key base for Russian military operations in Ukraine.

In view of Ukrainian threats to launch new attacks on the bridge, Mr Putin emphasised the need to build a motorway along the Sea of Azov coast to link Crimea with regions in southern Russia, the Kremlin said.

The truck bomb attack on October 8th disrupted travel on one of the two lanes of the bridge.

Russia blamed the attack on Ukrainian military intelligence and responded with several waves of strikes on Ukraine’s energy facilities and other key infrastructure.

The bridge was damaged by a truck bomb attack in October (Mikhail Metzel/Sputnik/Kremlin Pool Photo/AP)

Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov said last week widespread strikes targeting power, telecommunications and water infrastructure were intended to weaken Ukraine’s military potential and to derail shipments of western weapons.

Ukrainian authorities said there was another such barrage on Monday, hours after Russian media reported two explosions at air bases in Russia.

One reportedly happened at a base housing nuclear-capable strategic bombers which have been involved in launching strikes in Ukraine.

Read More

Want us to email you top stories each lunch time?

Download our Apps
© BreakingNews.ie 2023, developed by Square1 and powered by PublisherPlus.com