Ukraine criticized Russian naval exercises near its southern coast, saying the presence of warships have made navigation in the Black Sea and Azov Sea virtually impossible.
s Reuters reports, a statement by the foreign ministry, Ukraine said Russia’s actions “show blatant disregard for the rules and principles of international law.”
The statement also reads that:
This is a significant and unjustified complication of international shipping, especially trade, which can cause complex economic and social consequences, especially for the ports of Ukraine
Namely, Russia is carrying out naval drills in the Black Sea at the same time as it holds ground drills north of Ukraine in Belarus, part of a show of force that the West says could be a precursor to an invasion, which Moscow denies.
Six warships have arrived at Sevastopol in Crimea, which Moscow annexed from Ukraine in 2014. There was no immediate comment from Moscow on Ukraine’s statements.
Ukraine has long accused Russia of trying to affect trade from its southern ports by mounting what it calls de facto blockades.
Ukraine carries exports through ports on the Black and Azov Seas – Odessa, Pivdeny, Chornomorsk, Kherson, Mariupol and Berdyansk.