The Crimean Ministry of Resorts and Tourism reports on the preparation of a list of local tour operators which will be able to accept tourists from China as part of "visa-free travel regime”, reported the Ministry’s press service.
The Ministry noted that Crimean tour companies"willing to carry out activities on travel-related services and reception of Chinese tourists in 2018" have until December 15, 2017 to submit their applications.
The Crimean Ministry of Resorts said that this is their way of implementing the agreement between the governments of Russia and the People’s Republic of China on visa-free trips for tour groups dated February 29, 2000.
The Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that by inviting foreign citizens to the territory of the Crimea, the Russian authorities of the peninsula are attempting to legalize its annexation.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine repeatedly calls on foreigners and stateless persons to enter Russian-annexed Crimea solely in accordance with the laws of Ukraine and international law.
The internationally recognized Ukrainian territory of Crimea was annexed by the Russian Federation in March of 2014 in the wake of the Ukrainian revolution. The Kremlin has faced international condemnation for its annexation of the Peninsula, leading many western countries to impose economic sanctions against Russia. In the United Nations, only Afghanistan, North Korea, Cuba, Nicaragua, Venezuela, and Syria recognize Crimea as a legitimate federal subject of Russia.