18:32 19.11.2019

NATO welcomes return of captured ships to Ukraine by Russia

1 min read
NATO welcomes return of captured ships to Ukraine by Russia

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg welcomes the return to Ukraine by the Russian side of the small armored artillery boats Berdiansk and Nikopol, as well as the tugboat Yany Kapu, captured a year ago.

"I welcome the return of the seized Ukrainian ships. This is something Russia should have done a long time ago and they didn't have the right to seize those ships when they did so. So I welcome that they are now being returned. And this is also in line with Russia's international obligations. I think it is a good thing, also, because hopefully it can help to make some progress in implementing the Minsk agreements and help also the efforts of the Normandy Format to make progress, to find a sustainable political solution to the crisis in Ukraine," Stoltenberg said a press conference in Brussels on Tuesday.

He also expects this issue to be discussed by NATO foreign ministers at the Alliance's headquarters on Wednesday.

"And we also convey a very clear message that Russia must allow freedom of navigation in the Sea of Azov, and also, of course, in the Kerch Straits," he stressed.

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