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Reuters: Turkish cargo ship hit a mine en route to Ukrainian Black Sea port

Ukraine’s Navy spox did not confirm the incident and stated the information about it was not true.
Turkish cargo ship
Turkish cargo ship Kafkametler. Credit:
Reuters: Turkish cargo ship hit a mine en route to Ukrainian Black Sea port

On 6 October, a Turkish-flagged cargo ship allegedly hit a mine in the Black Sea off the coast of Romania on the way to the Ukrainian port of Izmayil, maritime and security sources told Reuters.

According to Reuters, the ship did not sustain any significant damage, and the crew was safe during the incident.

However, in a comment to Radio Liberty, Ukraine’s Navy spox, Dmytro Pletenchuk, did not confirm the incident. He stated that “the information is not true.”

“As for this case, we can only refute this information. It is not true. There was no mine explosion. And as of now, there are no consequences of this ‘incident,'” Dmytro Pletenchuk said.

At the same time, Pletenchuk added that the mine danger in the Black Sea should be taken seriously “given the way the Russians mined everything thoughtlessly.”

The Turkish maritime administration reported that on 6 October, an explosion occurred “15-20 meters behind the Kafkametler vessel, which was passing off the coast of Romania.” The vessel resumed sailing to deliver its cargo. According to the Turkish maritime administration, there is no evidence that a mine caused the explosion.

British maritime security company Ambrey, citing information it received, said the Turkish ship struck a sea mine 11 nautical miles north of Sulina in Romania, near the entrance to the Sulina Canal, Reuters reported.

“The vessel reportedly experienced an explosion at approximately 09:20 UTC (GMT). The vessel dropped anchor for a short period to assess the damage. At 12:10, the vessel resumed sailing,” Ambrey said in a note, adding that no casualties were reported.

Yoruk Isik, the head of the Turkish Bosphorus Observer consultancy, told Reuters the Turkish cargo ship Kafkametler had sustained minor damage to a ballast tank with no casualties among the crew.

According to MarineTraffic, a maritime analytics provider, the Kafkametler ship dropped anchor in the Danube channel close to the Ukrainian port of Vylkove at 21:20 GMT on Thursday, 6 October.

Russia maintains a de-facto blockade of Ukrainian seaports from the beginning of its full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. In July 2022, Russia suspended an UN-backed grain deal. The grain deal had allowed Ukraine to ship grains through a safe shipping channel.

After Russia withdrew from the grain deal, the Russian Armed Forces launched missile and drone attacks on Ukrainian ports, targeting port infrastructure and grain terminals in the Odesa Oblast (southern Ukraine) every week.

However, Ukraine has set up a temporary “humanitarian corridor” for cargo vessels, and around ten ships have already used the corridor to enter and leave Ukrainian Black Sea ports since August 2022.

On 4 September 2022, British intelligence suggested Russia may use sea mines in the approach to Ukrainian ports to target civilian shipping in the Black Sea, blaming Ukraine for any attacks.


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