Kyiv: Ukraine will not withdraw from the Azov Sea treaty with Russia

Ukraine will not break the treaty with Russia on the joint use of the Azov Sea and Kerch Strait because to do so would allow Moscow an opportunity to declare a territorial dispute, asserted Deputy Foreign Minister of Ukraine Olena Zerkal on the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry’s Twitter.

“It is a security issue for us. That is why we use the available instruments to settle this matter,” the statement reads.

Earlier, a member of the Verkhovna Rada from the Petro Poroshenko Bloc, Ivan Vinnyk called on the government to break the treaty with Moscow on the Azov Sea that was ratified in 2004 under Leonid Kuchma’s administration.

“This sea is considered to be inland sea of Russia and Ukrainia and is regulated by this Treaty,” Vinnyk noted. He promised to address the issue in the Verkhovna Rada regarding the denouncing of the treaty or derogation from the provisions of the treaty “for international law to be fully in effect.”

On August 21, Ukrainian border guards announced that Russia had detained about 150 ships heading to Ukrainian ports. According to the guards, ships were forced to wait several days to get permission to cross the Strait.

Earlier in August, the Russian Federal Agency for Fishery (Rosrybolovstvo) accused Ukraine of non-compliance with the Treaty on the Azov Sea.

  Ukraine, Russia, Azov Sea, Ukrainian Foreign Ministry