15:07 GMT +324 March 2018
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    French Foreign Ministry Condemns French Lawmakers' Plans to Visit Crimea

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    French Foreign Ministry condemned the intention of a number of French lawmakers to visit the Crimean peninsula.

    PARIS (Sputnik) — French Foreign Ministry spokesman Romain Nadal said on Tuesday that the country's authorities condemned the intention of a number of French lawmakers to visit the Crimean peninsula again.

    ​In July, 2015 a group of 10 French lawmakers visited Crimea despite domestic and European criticism. The lawmakers said at the time that what they had seen in the region was completely different to how it was usually portrayed in Western media. In April, French lawmaker Thierry Mariani said that 36 French National Assembly and Senate members have expressed their desire to join the French delegation due to travel to Crimea in July.

    Nadal told reporters that France and its EU partners did not recognize the "illegal annexation of Crimea."

    "Any initiatives that differ from this position should be condemned, and have no relation to the French authorities," he said.

    Since 2014, relations between Russia and the European Union deteriorated amid the crisis in Ukraine. Brussels, Washington and their allies have introduced several rounds of anti-Russia sanctions since Crimea became part of Russia in 2014 and for Moscow's alleged involvement in the Ukrainian conflict. Russia has repeatedly refuted the allegations, warning that the Western sanctions are counterproductive and undermine global stability.


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