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Russia and Ukraine Make Agreement on Border Issues

12. July 2010 by Gregg 0 Comments

While the 1200-mile-long land-based border between Russia and Ukraine is noticeable on any map, a hot point of diplomatic contention between the two countries over the years has been where the borders exist within the area known as the Black Sea. While during the Soviet Period clear administrative borders were set up, as each country split off independently these lines blurred, causing a recent dispute over Tuzla Spit Island in the middle of the Kerch Strait. To add further confusion to the subject, Ukrainian city Sevastopol currently hosts a Russian Naval base, for which which the lease was just renewed.

These disputes came to a head when Russia attempted to build a dam on Tuzla Spit Island. As the Kerch Strait is situated between the Black Sea and is considered to be part of Crimea Oblast by the Ukrainians, this has caused some major political disagreements between the two countries.

On Thursday, Ukrainian lawmakers finally ratified an agreement with Russia over the disputed territory. While the current governing coalition has been celebrating this as a victory for diplomacy and a major step forward toward the goal of Visa-Free travel between the two countries, the Opposition in Ukraine’s Parliament has characterized it as merely another concession that current President Viktor Yanukovich’s government has made to Moscow.

As of January, a park was set to be developed on the island and a former Monastery there was deemed a site of National Cultural importance. The effect that the agreement would have on these plans has not been mentioned.