The intentional provocation executed by Kyiv saw three Ukrainian naval vessels seized by Russia. The vessels were intentionally violating protocol for passing through the Strait – protocol previously agreed upon by Kiev and previously observed by Ukrainian naval vessels.
(…) US-NATO backed putsch that seized power in Ukraine in 2013 – setting off Ukrainian-Russian tensions in the first place.
(…) the prominent role paramilitary Neo-Nazi organizations have played in both overthrowing the elected government in 2013 and militancy carried out against Russian businesses, institutions, and even Ukrainians of Russian descent– particularly in Donbas, eastern Ukraine.
On November 25 border patrol boats belonging to Russia’s FSB security serviceseized 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, which in the treaty is considered to be the “internal waters” of both Russia and Ukraine.
Russia violated international law as well as key principles of the European security framework in illegally annexing the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the City of Sevastopol. The European Union does not recognise and continues to strongly condemn this violation of international law, which remains a challenge to the international security order. This position is based on the UN Charter, which clearly states that the territory of a State cannot be acquired by another State resulting from the threat or use of force, as well as on the Helsinki Final Act in which the signatories declared their intention to respect theinviolability of frontiers and territorial integrity.
UNGA Resolution 68/262, which condemned Russia's illegal actions in Ukraine, was supported by 100 United Nations member states. Only 10 states opposed it.