‘Russians flee if nothing to say’. Kremlin rep refuses to hear about captured Ukrainian navy men

Boris Gryzlov (R) and Sergei Shoigu (L). Photo by kremlin.ru

On December 4, Russia’s permanent representative to the Trilateral Contact Group on Ukraine walked out during the speech by Ukrainian representative Yevgenij Marchuk, OSCE Special Representative Martin Sajdik told journalists.

“Today in Minsk, Russian envoy Boris Gryzlov left the room when the Ukrainian side in the person of Yevgenij Marchuk was expressing our protest against Russia’s naked aggression in the Azov Sea and the Kerch Strait. When Russians have nothing to say, they flee. Or boldly lie,” First Vice Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Iryna Gerashchenko said on Facebook.

According to her, the Ukrainian side called on the OSCE SMM to immediately begin enhanced monitoring of the Sea of Azov and adjacent territories, which should remain without heavy weapons and equipment in accordance with the Minsk Agreements. But Russians actually blocked the discussion of its military provocation in the Sea of Azov, she stressed.

Moscow denies that the annexation of Crimea, paramilitary formations in Donbas and seizing Ukrainian vessels are interrelated.

“The fact that certain OSCE representatives in working subgroups tried to act beyond their mandate, deviate from their mediatory role, offering for discussion the issues that are not related to the Ukrainian settlement, raises brows,” the Russian envoy told reporters.

Meanwhile, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin said after Tuesday’s NATO ministerial meeting in Brussels that the alliance ‘stands ready to build up its presence in the Black Sea region’.

Moreover, the European Court of Human Rights, acting on a request from Kyiv, called on Moscow to provide ‘appropriate medical treatment’ to the wounded soldiers.

2On November 25, three Ukrainian ships were captured by the Russian special forces in the Kerch Strait. According to Ukrainian media, Russia took prisoner 24 people, 6 sailors were injured. In response, 30-day martial law has been introduced in 10 regions of Ukraine — those bordering Russia, Transnistria and the Black Sea coast, as well as in Chernihiv region bordering Belarus. In turn, Vladimir Putin called the incident ‘provocation staged by Petro Poroshenko ahead of the presidential election in Ukraine’.

The three Ukrainian vessels seized by Russian military remain in Crimea while the soldiers were taken to Moscow.


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