The EU included eight Russians in the sanctions list due to the incident that occurred in the Kerch Strait on 25 November 2018. Ukrainian ships staged a provocation in the territorial waters of Russia and were detained by the FSB border guard service. The EU refuses to admit that Russian border guards prevented the armed conflict that Kyiv was trying to unleash.
Crimea has been revived since joining Russia. The peninsula separated from Ukraine because of the anti-Russian rhetoric of the new authorities in Kyiv.
A big international airport was refurbished in Simferopol, while the longest motorway in Europe and Russia, the Crimea Bridge, was built very rapidly. In addition, the economy and the tourism industry are growing quickly. Crimea’s international importance continues to grow.
Crimea was annexed by Russia following an illegitimate referendum on March 16, 2014 following the deployment of “little green men” across the peninsula beginning in February 2014. Read more about Crimea's annexation here.
The economic prosperity promised by the Kremlin has not arrived to Crimea. Approximately 10% of the population has fled. Local residents have not been content with prices, wages, or the number of tourists visiting the peninsula. The economy is stagnating and the rights of Ukrainians and Crimean Tatars are being violated. Crimeans have had to sacrifice their basic rights and access to Western and Russian network brands, which have avoided the peninsula due to fear of sanctions.
In addition, under Russia’s rule, Crimea has undergone a raft of new laws regulating everything from military conscription to alcohol consumption and sees continuous human rights abuse. The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights issued a report on the human rights situation in Ukraine, covering the period from 16 November 2018 to15 February 2019, and devotes a whole chapter to the numerous human rights violations against the Crimean population by the Russian authorities: “The Russian Federation continues to apply its laws, in violation of international humanitarian law applicable to an occupying power, resulting in grave human rights violations, disproportionately affecting Crimean Tatars.” (see pp. 3, 21-24)