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Ukraine declares Russian Black Sea ports unsafe for navigation

Ukraine has declared Russian ports in the Black Sea as being under military threat.
Ukraine declares Russian Black Sea ports unsafe for navigation

On August 4, Ukraine issued a Coastal Warning, officially published on the “Derzhidrography” website, stating that the waters of Russian ports in the Black Sea are considered to be under military threat, Center of Transport Strategies reports. The warning specifically mentions the ports of Anapa, Novorossiysk, Gelendzhik, Tuapse, Sochi, and Taman.

Russia exports goods worth approximately $100 billion annually through these ports. Restricting or complicating maritime trade to these ports would provide Ukraine with a powerful leverage not only to unblock its own ports but also to exert pressure for other demands.

Earlier, on July 21, 2023, the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense announced that all vessels heading to the Black Sea waters towards Russian ports could be considered by Ukraine as transporting cargo of military nature, with all corresponding risks involved. Additionally, maritime navigation in the north-eastern part of the Black Sea and the Kerch-Yenikalsky Strait was prohibited due to safety concerns.

This move came in response to the Russian Ministry of Defense’s declaration on July 19, 2023, which temporarily deemed several areas in the north-western and south-eastern parts of the international waters of the Black Sea unsafe for navigation.

The tension between the two countries escalated further on August 4, as it was reported that a Ukrainian naval drone attacked the port of Novorossiysk, where a large landing ship, the “Olenegorskiy Gornyak,” which is part of the Russian fleet, was hit. This incident highlighted the vulnerability of the aggressor country’s navy and the real threat posed to commercial maritime navigation in the area, reinforcing Ukraine’s concerns and actions.

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