The Russian military on Wednesday ablaze warning shots and dropped bombs on a British warship’s path to hunt it out of waters which Moscow has entitled in the Black Sea off the coast of the Crimea peninsula.
Whereas Britain has rejected Russia’s account of this incident, saying it supposed any shots fired were a pre-announced Russian “gunnery exercise”, and that no bombs had been dropped. But it confirmed that its destroyer, HMS Defender, had navigated through what it labeled as waters belonging to Ukraine.
“The ship was conducting an innocent passage through Ukrainian territorial waters in accordance with international law”, Britain’s Ministry of Defence said in a statement.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s spokesman said: “It’s incorrect to say either that it was fired upon or that the ship was in Russian waters.”
Military experts said that whether or not the details of the Russian or British accounts were precise, the incident appeared to signify an acceleration in hostility between the West and Russia over dubious sea lanes.
Russia’s foreign ministry called the route of the British warship through the area an act of “blatant provocation” and said it would furthermore call the British ambassador over the episode.
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