Russia hands over to Ukraine three ships detained in Kerch Strait
YEREVAN, NOVEMBER 18, ARMENPRESS. Russia has returned to Ukraine the three ships detained in the Kerch Strait area a year ago, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a commentary on November 18, TASS reported.
“On November 18, the handover of the three Ukrainian naval ships to Ukraine took place that violated Russia’s border in November 2018 in the course of Kiev’s intentional provocation in the Kerch Strait area and were detained by Russian authorities”, the ministry said, adding: “Their handover to Ukraine for safekeeping became possible because the Russian authorities had completed the required investigative procedures concerning the ships and their presence in Russian territory is no longer necessary for continuing the judicial procedures”.
On November 25, 2018, three Ukrainian warships en route from Odessa in the Black Sea to Mariupol in the Sea of Azov illegally crossed Russia’s state border, entered Russia’s territorial waters and started performing dangerous maneuvers. Despite repeated warnings and demands to stop, the Ukrainian vessels continued their way, forcing Russia to use weapons. The three Ukrainian ships were detained in the Black Sea and taken to the port of Kerch. Three Ukrainian servicemen were slightly wounded and received medical assistance, and their lives are out of danger. A criminal case has been launched over the violation of Russia’s state border.