Ukrainian ships entered Russian waters in the Kerch Strait without registration

Summary

In November 2018, Russia confiscated three Ukrainian ships, including the crew, 22 marines and two members of the Ukrainian secret service. These ships had entered Russian waters in the Kerch Strait without registration. After ignoring several warnings from the Russian coastguard, the Ukrainian ships were finally seized by Russian border guards and the FSB.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation on Ukraine and the Azov Sea.

On 25 November 2018, 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, which the agreement considers being the “internal waters” of both Russia and Ukraine.

On May 25, 2019, the United Nations Tribunal for the Law of the Sea ordered Russia to immediately release Ukrainian sailors and allow them to return to Ukraine. The EU has also urged Russia to release the captured crew.

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 158
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 11/07/2019
  • Language/target audience: German
  • Country: Russia, Ukraine
  • Keywords: Azov sea, Kerch, Black Sea
  • Outlet: RT Deutsch
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Kerch incident was a provocation by Poroshenko before Ukrainian elections

The new head of the General Staff of Armed Forces of Ukraine confirmed that the incident in the Kerch Strait was a provocation, staged by Poroshenko in the run-up to the election campaign. That is an impertinence. The Ukrainian side admitted to the provocation.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation on Ukraine and Azov Sea. No evidence given that the confrontation was a planned provocation and that the new head of the Armed Forces of Ukraine confirmed it.

On 25 November 2018, 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, which the agreement considers being the “internal waters” of both Russia and Ukraine.

RT and Sputnik banned from UK media freedom conference, so they don’t ask the “wrong questions”

The United Kingdom is isolating the “inconvenient ones”: it is ok to lie when all the like-minded ones stand up and lie in chorus, without those who will tell the truth. It is easier not to let Russia Today and Sputnik in, so they don’t ask the wrong questions. The fashion for Russophobia is still very much alive. They are in a state of panic that someone will ask the wrong questions.

Disproof

In reality, Russia's RT and Sputnik news agencies have been banned from attending a conference on media freedom in London for playing an "active role in spreading disinformation".

“We have not accredited RT or Sputnik because of their active role in spreading disinformation,” Foreign Office spokeswoman said.  “While it’s not possible to accommodate all requests for accreditation, journalists from across the world’s media are attending the conference, including from Russia”, spokeswoman added. One of the Russian journalists present at the event was Galina Timchenko,  founder and CEO of Meduza Russia Latvia.

Ukraine will fall apart because of the nationalists

Nationalism is a disaster for any country, but in Ukraine, it verges on the grotesque. Ukraine will never make peace with Donbas because it is unacceptable for the nationalists. Ukraine is heading for a breakup.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives about Ukrainian nationalists and the disintegration of Ukraine with no evidence given.

In 2014, the far-right ‘Right Sector’ (often described as "ultra-nationalist" or "Nazis" by pro-Kremlin outlets) gained only 1.8% of the votes, far short of the threshold needed to enter Parliament. This demonstrates the attitude and support for far-right nationalist parties in Ukraine.