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    The detained Ukrainian ships are delivered to the port of Kerch

    Kremlin Views Ukrainian President's Call to NATO as Provocation Ahead of Vote

    © Sputnik / Alexey Malgavko
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    Kerch Strait Row (58)
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    Ukraine has imposed martial law in 10 regions of Ukraine following an incident when three Ukrainian vessels were seized by Russia in the Black Sea after breaching the Russian maritime border.

    Kremlin considers Poroshenko's call on NATO to deploy ships to the Sea of Azov as part of a provocative policy shortly before the Ukrainian elections, spokesman Dmitry Peskov stated. 

    'The question itself, of course, is aimed at further provoking tensions, at continuing the provocative line, which is based on the pre-electoral political interests of President Poroshenko', Peskov stated responding to a question about the Kremlin's position on Poroshenko's appeals to NATO to send ships to the incident area in the Kerch Strait. 

    The Kremlin spokesman has refused to comment on a possible response by Russia to the likely entry of NATO ships into the Sea of Azov.

    READ MORE: Washington Might Stand Behind Kiev's Provocation in Kerch Strait — Analysts

    According to Peskov, the basis of the question lies in ‘the electoral and domestic political interests of President Poroshenko'.

    The statement followed Poroshenko's interview with the German tabloid Bild where he said that Kiev hopes that NATO will send ships to the incident area in the Kerch Strait.

    The incident in the Kerch Strait took place on 25 November when the Ukrainian Berdyansk and Nikopol gunboats and the Yany Kapu tugboat illegally crossed the Russian maritime border as they sailed toward the Kerch Strait, the entrance to the Sea of Azov. The Ukrainian vessels were seized by Russia after failing to respond to a demand to stop.

    Topic:
    Kerch Strait Row (58)

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    Tags:
    ships, violation, NATO, Petro Poroshenko, Russia, Kerch Strait
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