Penza cheers as Crimea celebrates 2 years since reunion with Russia
Penza, 18 March 2016. PenzaNews. Penza city held a public rally concert “Crimean Spring” dedicated to the second anniversary of reunification of Crimea with Russia on Friday, March 18. The event took place at the Lenina square.
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In spite of sleet and piercing wind, hundreds of Penza citizens came to express their solidarity with Crimea, including public officials, workers of commercial and budget enterprises, and school and university students.
The people were holding banners reading: “March 18 – One Country, One History!”, “Sevastopol, Crimea, Russia!”, “We Are Together! We Will Win!”, “Russia – Crimea – Unity!”, “Peace For Crimea!”, “Russia Won’t Leave Its People Hanging,” and more.
In a welcoming word to the crowd, Vladimir Kerkhanadzhev, veteran of the Battle for Stalingrad and the Battle of Kursk, chairman of the city council of war, labor, military and law enforcement veterans, stressed that Russia celebrates its reunion with Crimea.
“Since ages past, Crimea has been a part of the Russian Empire. We fought bloody battles in 1944 to free Crimea from Nazi occupiers. […] However, at one point of time, the events came together to make Crimea no longer a part of the Russian Federation. I bow my frosty head to our President Putin who was the first leader to show such courage and bravery – to makle Crimea a part of Russia again. Glory to our Russia!” the veteran said.
In turn, Sergei Kazakov, Distinguished Artist of Russia, Presidential Trustee, artistic director of the Penza Lunacharsky Drama Theater, deputy of the regional Legislative Assembly, called the reunion of Crimea and Sevastopol with Russia “giving a very big finger to the West.”
He reminded the crowd of the events two years ago when people living in different regions of Russia joined together in their enormous support to the Crimea people.
“All-around support of Russians gave enormous energy, a very powerful impulse to Crimean citizens, to our President. Nobody dares to say Crimea is not ours, because Crimea is ours,” he stressed.
According to Petr Voronin, veteran of the Russian Navy, chairman of the Penza Navy Corpus, “we turned Crimea into an unsinkable aircraft carrier over those two years.”
“Crimea began to develop as our health resort, just like in the Soviet Union. The factories that had been working for Sevastopol’s military industry began to develop and recover. When we are united, we are strong,” he said.
Artem Kolobov, head of the regional branch of Russian Student Teams, also addressed the people.
“For over a year now, the student team movement in Crimea has been experiencing a rebirth after the crucial changes in history. This is the movement that became an amalgamate of all romantic elements and all traditions of the construction brigades of the past, those who built the Baikal-Amur Mainline, who broke new ground; it united together the energy and the skills of the modern youth. There is a general uplift and determination to move forward among the youth in Crimea,” he noted.
The Penza region is actively developing its cooperation with Crimean cities, and several dozens of students will be leaving for the Crimean peninsula to do work, Artem Kolobov added.
The public rally concluded with stage performances by local artists, such as the singer Irken Mustafin with a song “I Love You, Russia.”
However, the musical performances were cut short by a Penza rain.