Ukraine threatened to sink Russian ships in the Black Sea

The Ukrainian authorities decided to imitate the threats of the Russian Ministry of Defence, which the day before considered ships sailing to Ukrainian ports on the Black Sea as military targets.

“All ships sailing in the Black Sea towards the seaports of the Russian Federation and Ukrainian seaports located in the territory of Ukraine temporarily occupied by Russia may be considered by Ukraine as carrying military cargo with all associated risks,” the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine said in a statement issued on Thursday.

In a communiqué that almost verbatim repeats the wording of the Russian military, the department says that the new order will be implemented from 00:00 on July 21.

In addition, Kiev announced a ban on sailing in the Sea of ​​Azov and the Kerch Strait (from 05:00 on July 21) and reported that the relevant messages for sailors had already been published in navigation systems.

“By openly threatening civilian ships carrying food from Ukrainian ports, launching missile and drone attacks on civilian infrastructure in civilian cities, deliberately creating a military threat on trade routes, the Kremlin has made the Black Sea a danger zone, primarily for Russian ships and seaports,” the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine stresses. The agency adds that responsibility for any risk “falls entirely on the Russian leadership.”

The day before, the Russian military announced that it would consider all ships sailing to Ukrainian ports as carriers of military cargo, and flag states as participants in hostilities on the territory of Kiev.

This decision was made in connection with the failure of the grain deal, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov explained on Thursday. He added that the statement of the Ministry of National Defense was not related to the undermining of the Crimean bridge.

We would like to remind you that on July 17 Russia announced its withdrawal from the agreement on the “grain corridor”, under which over 30 million tons of Ukrainian food entered the world markets during the year. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky turned to the UN and Turkey – the guarantors of the “grain agreement” – with a proposal to continue grain exports without Moscow’s participation.

However, Kiev has not yet reached an agreement on security guarantees for the “corridor”: the United States has refused to escort the grain carriers, and Turkey also does not want to use its own fleet, considering such a step risky, Bloomberg reported.


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