Russia Continues Blockade of Sea of Azov
Russia's seizure of Ukrainian naval vessels and crews on November 25 has raised tensions between Kyiv and Moscow to the highest point since early 2014
” Not a single ship heading for Ukrainian seaports or leaving Ukrainian seaports of Azov sea are allowed by Russians,” Volodymyr Omelyan, Minister of Infrastructure of Ukraine said.
Russia’s seizure of Ukrainian naval vessels and crews on November 25 has raised tensions between Kyiv and Moscow to the highest point since early 2014.
“I worry about the sailors detained in the Kerch Strait because we overcame together many things, I studied with some of them, sailed with others,” captain of the Kremenchug smaller armored gunboat said.
The three ships with 24 Ukrainian soldiers on board were trying to pass from the Black Sea into the Sea of Azov through the Kerch Strait. The Russian coast guard fired on the Ukrainian boats and seized them. The Ukrainian government along with the international community has been calling for their release.
“We continue building up our international coalition. We should underline that our international cooperation in the Black Sea is extremely important to maintain stability and security in the Black Sea. We are currently in very active engagement with multiple international partners to make sure that we deliver effective international solutions to these escalatory actions of Russian Federation in the Sea of Azov,” Anatoliy Petrenko, deputy Defence Minister of Ukraine said.
Russian authorities are denying access to the lawyers of the 24 detained Ukrainian naval personnel. This is according to Nikolay Polozov, one of the Russian lawyers. The ships were seized by Russian special forces when they attempted to cross into the Sea of Azov
Last Friday, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko announced that all Russian males aged 16 to 60 will now be barred from entering the country, as part of broader security measures.