'Kharkiv agreements' fix Russia's violation of its legal obligations amid temporary occupation of Crimea - Ukraine's MFA
The agreement on the presence of the Russian Black Sea Fleet on the territory of Ukraine fixes Russia's violation of its legal obligations amid the temporary occupation of the Crimean peninsula and provides Ukraine with additional arguments when considering in international courts the issues of bringing Russia to justice and loss compensation for the occupation of Crimea, Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Oleh Nikolenko said.
"The Russian Federation unilaterally denounced the agreement on the presence of the Russian Black Sea Fleet on the territory of Ukraine in March 2014 to avoid responsibility for the seizure of Crimea. Ukraine did not recognize this denunciation. We continue to consider the agreement valid, since it fixes Russia's violation of its legal obligations amid the temporary occupation of the Crimean peninsula," Nikolenko told Interfax-Ukraine on Monday.
He said the arguments for this are that the agreement fixes the temporary nature of the basing of the Black Sea Fleet; leaves in force Russia's obligations not to have nuclear weapons in its composition; establishes the total number of personnel, ships, weapons and determines the places of temporary deployment; obliges the military formations of the fleet to respect sovereignty and legislation of Ukraine.
"Violation of the agreement's provisions provides us with additional arguments in the possible consideration in international courts of issues of bringing Russia to justice and loss compensation for the occupation of Crimea. We do not forget that for the deployment of the Black Sea Fleet Russia bears financial obligations to Ukraine. Ignoring mutual settlements also creates grounds for debt claims," the spokesperson said.
He said that by committing armed aggression and occupying part of Ukrainian territory, Russia violated numerous norms of international law, in particular, bilateral treaties.
"The Ukrainian side is carrying out systematic work to restore the violated rights of Ukraine. Let us also return to the issues of restitution, in particular under the agreement on the Russian Black Sea Fleet," Nikolenko said.