The U.S. Embassy in Kyiv says that Russia's unauthorized construction of warships in occupied Crimea violates international norms.

"Russia's unauthorized construction of warships on sovereign Ukrainian territory, which it seized by force, violates international norms once again. Sanctions will stay in place until Russia returns control of Crimea to Ukraine and withdraws from the Donbas. #CrimeaIsUkraine," the Embassy said on Facebook on July 20.

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UNIAN memo. Russia annexed Ukraine's Crimea in March 2014 after its troops had occupied the peninsula. An illegal referendum was held for Crimeans to decide on accession to Russia. De-facto Crimean authorities reported that allegedly 96.77% of the Crimean population had voted for joining Russia. On March 18, 2014, the so-called agreement on the accession of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol to Russia was signed in the Kremlin.

The West did not recognize the annexation in response to which sanctions against Russia were introduced.

Ukraine's parliament voted to designate February 20, 2014, as the official date when the temporary occupation of Crimea began.