Russia has put the Zhuravka-Millerovo railway section between the Voronezh and Rostov regions, which was built around Ukraine, into operation.
"The Zhuravka-Millerovo section has opened up to traffic. Thus, we can say that the operation of this double-track electrified railway, which was built around neighboring Ukraine, has begun ... The intensification of traffic on the line will increase as corresponding plans are realized by the Ministry of Transport, the Russian Railways, and other relevant entities,” reports Russia’s Interfax news agency citing its source in railway authorities.
Until now, Russian trains have headed for this region along a road that runs through the territory of the Luhansk region and crosses the Russian-Ukrainian border several times.
The plans to build a new railway line leading to the south of Russia and bypassing Ukrainian territory, was announced in 2014 after the deterioration of relations between Moscow and Kyiv over the annexation of Crimea by Russia and the participation of Russian troops in the conflict in the Donbas. The Russian military began work on an agreement with Russian Railways a year later.
In 2012, Russia offered to move the border of Ukraine in this area, but this idea was not supported.