KIEV (Sputnik) — Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has given instructions to sue Russia for causing "environmental damage" as a result of building a bridge to Crimea, Ukrainian presidential spokesman Svyatoslav Tsegolko said Friday.
"The president gave instructions to sue the Russian Federation because of environmental damage from the construction of the Kerch bridge," Tsegolko wrote on Twitter without specifying the court Poroshenko planned to file a lawsuit with.
According to Poroshenko's press service, the instructions were made during the meeting on forestry reform and improvement of state environmental policy.
"I would like the issue related to the disaster caused by the construction of the Kerch Bridge to be considered and a respective lawsuit to the international structures to be submitted," Poroshenko said, as quoted by the press service.
The president added that he would like to receive the information about the lawsuit as soon as possible.
Previously, the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry delivered a protest note to Russia with regard to restrictions on maritime traffic through the Kerch Strait in August-September 2017 due to the construction of a bridge that will connect the Russian peninsula of Crimea with the Krasnodar Territory.
The ministry claimed that the construction of the bridge is contrary to international law, yet again refusing to recognize Crimea a part of Russia despite the 2014 referendum.
The Crimea Bridge across the Kerch Strait will connect the peninsula and the Krasnodar Territory. Its total length is 19 kilometers, which will make it the longest bridge in Russia.
Car traffic via the bridge is expected to start in December 2018. The investment in the project amounts to 200 billion rubles ($3.47 billion).