Ukraine’s intelligence reports uptick in Azov Sea-based Russian fleet activity, says provocations highly probable

The intelligence of the anti-terrorist operation (ATO) headquarters observes spike in activity of the Russian coast guard vessels operated by the Russian Border Guard Service and the Black Sea Fleet of the Russian Navy based in the Sea of Azov.

As reported by Censor.NET citing the statement by the ATO headquarters press center, the Russian Federation is taking measures to reinforce its contingent in the Sea of Azov with warships and auxiliary craft.

"Apparently, the purpose for such measures could be a tit-for-tat response to detention of the Nord fishing trawler by Ukraine’s State Border Guard Service in the waters of the Sea of Azov," the statement reads.

"Taking this into account, the ATO headquarters warns Ukrainian fishermen fishing in the Sea of Azov about possible provocations by the Russian Federation, which may result in the detention of Ukrainian fishing vessels. The ATO headquarters also does not rule out plotting of such provocations in the Black Sea water area," the agency said.

On March 25, the Ukrainian Border Guard Service arrested the fishing vessel flying the Russian flag in the Ukraine's water zone of the Sea of Azov. The check showed that the vessel had previously called into Crimean ports in violation of the Ukrainian legislation.

On April 4, arrested vessel’s captain Vladimir Gorbenko was brought to Kherson for bail hearing. He was charged with violation of the order of entry into the temporarily occupied territory of Ukraine and departure from it under part 2 of article 332-1 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine.

On April 6, Kherson city court remanded Nord’s captain in pretrial custody until May 31. He was later bailed out after 35,240 hryvnia (about $1,330) was posted for him.

The employees of the General Consulate of the Russian Federation to Ukraine tried to smuggle Nord’s crew out of the country on the night of April 8.

Источник: https://censor.net.ua/en/n3061489