Tuesday April 22,2014 : NEW USE FOR THE CRIMEA
Russia's president wants to make it a fifth gambling haven.
Russian president Vladimir Putin already has a new activity earmarked for his recently annexed Crimea territory; he wants it to become the fifth gambling zone in Russia.
The BBC reports that by law casinos are restricted to four special areas in Russia, all a long way from Moscow. Of these four zones, thus far only Azov City, a coastal area east of Crimea, has opened casinos.
Other officially designated gambling zones in Russia are Primorye, in the far east, Sibirskaya Moneta, in central Siberia, and Yantarnaya in Kaliningrad, by the Baltic Sea.
Crimea is not only the base of Russia's Black Sea Fleet – it also has a special place in Russian history as a holiday destination, and was part of Russia until 1954, when Premier Nikita Sergeyevich Khrushchev ceded it to the Ukraine – then a constituent of the USSR.