German Navy captain and naval expert Klaus Mommsen explains why the Crimea, with its Black See port Sevastopol, is so important to Russia.
Russia's central bank has presented a new banknote showing the Crimean naval city of Sevastopol and the Greek and Roman ruins at Chersonesus. Images of the annexed peninsula were chosen by the public in an online poll.
The US has accused Russia of implementing a policy of repression on the Crimean peninsula and called for the occupation to end. But three years after the annexation of Crimea, signs of Russia's withdrawal remain elusive.
Ukraine says that German dance band Scooter broke the law when it performed in Russian-annexed Crimea. But is the concert one of many signs that Western Europe is accepting the status quo in the area?
European Union member states have voted to extend sanctions imposed on Crimea for one more year. The bloc is also expected to prolong sanctions on Russia for its involvement in the conflict in eastern Ukraine.
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