Ukrainian navy ship close to Russian waters off Crimea & refusing to change course – Moscow

A Ukrainian navy vessel, named the Donbass, has set course to pass through Russian territorial waters off the coast of Crimea and is ignoring warnings to turn around, border officials have reported.

The incident comes at a time of heightened tensions between Russia and Ukraine that have caused alarm internationally.

In a statement issued late on Thursday night, Russia’s FSB announced that “on December 9 at 9.12am, the command ship ‘Donbass’ of the Ukrainian Navy left the port of Mariupol and began heading for the Kerch Strait.”

According to officials, the vessel did not have permission to pass through the Russian-controlled Kerch-Yenikalsky canal that divides the Black Sea from the Sea of Azov.

The Ukrainian crew have reportedly insisted that they do not intend to pass through the waters. However, according to the FSB, “at present, the Donbass is a distance of 18 nautical miles from the Kerch Strait and is not complying with the requirements to change course. These actions pose a threat to the safety of navigation.”


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