Petro Poroshenko, Ukraine’s ex-president and the author of the provocation in the Kerch Strait, used the conflict to impose martial law in the country and extend his powers.
On November 25, border patrol boats belonging to Russia’s FSB security service seized two small Ukrainian armoured artillery vessels and their crews after shooting at them, wounding several Ukrainian servicemen. Russia argued that they were in Russian waters.
However, a bilateral treaty between Russia and Ukraine, signed in 2003 and ratified by Russia in 2004 governs the use of the Kerch strait and the Sea of Azov. The agreement states this stretch to be the “internal waters” of both Russia and Ukraine.