Russian navy fires warning shots, boards cargo ship sailing in Black Sea

A Russian warship on Sunday fired warning shots and boarded a cargo vessel it said was heading to Ukraine in the wake of pulling out of a deal that would allow Kyiv to transport grain through the Black Sea.

Russia’s Ministry of Defense said the captain of the Sukru Okan, a cargo ship sailing under the flag of Palau, refused to stop for an inspection of the “potential carriage of prohibited goods” while it was heading to the Ukrainian port of Izmail.

“The Russian combat ship fired warning shots from automatic small arms to forcibly stop the vessel,” officials told TASS, the official Russian news agency.

The Kremlin has said that any ship headed to Ukraine would be considered as potentially carrying weapons. The captain of the Vasily Bykov Russian patrol ship sent troops to the Sukru Okan by a Ka-29 helicopter.

“After the inspection group completed its work aboard the Sukru Okan, the vessel continued sailing toward the port of Izmail,” the Russian Defense Ministry said. “The Black Sea Fleet’s ships continue patrols in the designated area.”

A senior Ukrainian official on Sunday called the incident an act of piracy and said it should be condemned by the international community.

The “deliberate attack and forced inspection by Russia of Sukru Okan international civilian bulk carrier … is a clear violation of international law of the sea,” Mykhailo Podolyak, a top adviser to Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelenskyy, said on X, the social media site formerly known as Twitter. “Ukraine will draw all the necessary conclusions and choose the best possible response.”

Source link

Leave a Comment