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Major Archaeological Site In Crimea Put Under Russian Federal Control

Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered a major archaeological site in Crimea to be placed under federal control following disagreements over the appointment of the site's director.

The Interfax news agency quoted Putin's adviser, Vladimir Tolstoy, as saying on August 1 that the area of the ancient Greek city of Chersonesus will be placed under the Culture Ministry's oversight.

The site is located just outside Sevastopol, the main port city in Crimea, the Black Sea Peninsula illegally annexed by Russia from Ukraine last year.

Putin's order followed the Sevastopol governor's decision last month to appoint a Russian Orthodox priest as director of the Chersonesus museum.

The appointment sparked widespread public criticism and angered the museum staff who said the priest wasn't qualified for the job.

Tolstoy was quoted as saying the Culture Ministry will choose a new director.

Chersonesus became a UNESCO World Heritage site in 2013.

Based on reporting by AP and Interfax