On March 16, the State Council of the Republic of Crimea hosted a Solemn Meeting on the occasion of the third anniversary of the reunification of the peninsula with the Russian Federation. Alexander Zakharchenko, leading the official delegation from the Donetsk People's Republic, congratulated the Crimeans on the landmark date.
Representatives of 15 regions and districts of the Russian Federation, plenipotentiaries of the Russian President to the North Caucasian District Oleg Belavyentsev and to the South-Federal District – Kirill Stepanov, politicians of the Republika Srpska, the Heads of the Donbass People's Republics Alexander Zakharchenko and Igor Plotnitsky arrived in Simferopol to mark the event together with the Crimea.
"March 16, 2014, is a big day for the people of Donbass. We rejoiced at your victory, watched with pride your returning home.
We held a referendum as well. Yes, we did not have such legal relations with Ukraine as you did, but we also observed the people’s right to self-determination. In response, on May 26, 2014, the Kiev authorities delivered air strikes against the city of Donetsk. We have suffered huge losses among civilians. But, no matter how hard it was, we are still proud of you. We can see how the economy is being developed in the Crimea, the infrastructure is being restored. We are happy with your new TPP and energy independence, we are looking forward to fly to a new beautiful airport of yours. I am confident that cooperation between the Crimea and the DPR will be expanded only, as a number of mutually beneficial projects have been launched already.
Whatever sanctions are imposed, whatever pressure is put by the West, no matter whether the Crimea is recognized as a part of Russia or not, we are Russians! No country in the world has the right to dictate when and how we will return to our homeland. It is not their business! You were the first to show the whole world community that we were invincible. We followed you. I am sure that Donbass will enter Russia soon. And we will go to our brothers in the Crimea by land," the DPR Head addressed the meeting.
Sergei Aksyonov, the Head of the Republic of Crimea, presented facts and figures confirming that the choice made by the people of the Crimea in 2014 was adequate. He is sure that in 2014 they left the poverty and devastation of Ukraine. According to the Republic’s Head, the budget of the peninsula doubled for the three years in the Russian Federation, even without including federal assistance, and the unemployment rate in the Crimea is two times lower than the Russian average. The social sphere is being transformed actively in the Republic, new large-scale strategic facilities are being built. During the year, 47 foreign delegations visited the Crimea. Plans call for the conclusion of contracts for 140 investment projects worth 144 billion rubbles.
Besides, Sergei Aksyonov expressed his confidence that the Crimea might soon be congratulating the people of Donbas on the Victory.
"Russophobic hysteria will soon be replaced by a pragmatic policy. You, our brothers, should make it a little longer. These days you are on the very peak of the struggle. You are at the main front. But I believe that the truth will triumph. We wholeheartedly wish you peace in your home," said Sergei Aksyonov.
Guests of the meeting were congratulated on the holiday by the Crimean on-stage performance groups, the concert ended with the Kuban Cossack Choir’s performance.
Official translation by DONi News Agency