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Putin makes surprise visit to Crimea

President Vladimir Putin paid a surprise visit to Crimea on Saturday to host so-called “reunification events,” nine years after Russia’s 2014 annexation of the peninsula from Ukraine.

According to his spokesman, Putin had previously been expected to attend the day’s ceremonies via video link but was shown on state television strolling through Sevastopol, the Black Sea port of Crimea’s largest city.

According to images broadcast on the Rossiya-1 channel, Putin also attended art school in the company of local governor Mikhail Razvozhayev.

“Our President Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin knows how to surprise. In a good way,” Razvozhayev said on messaging app Telegram.

It was expected that Putin would attend the opening of an art school for children via video link.

“But Vladimir Vladimirovich came personally. Himself. At the wheel. Because on such a historic day, the President is always with Sevastopol and the people of Sevastopol,” the Moscow-appointed official said.

State media did not immediately broadcast any remarks from Putin, a day after the International Criminal Court said it had issued an arrest warrant for him and accused him of the war crime of illegally deporting hundreds of children from Ukraine.

Putin has not yet commented publicly on the move. Its spokesman called it “null and void,” saying that Russia found the very issues raised by the ICC “outrageous and unacceptable.”

Russia captured Crimea in 2014, eight years before launching its all-out invasion of Ukraine. Ukraine says it will fight to drive Russia out of Crimea and all other areas Russia has occupied in the years-long war.

Source: Crypto News Deutsch

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