EU, NATO call to 'de-escalate' tensions at sea between Russia, Ukraine
Policemen stand in front of the Russian Embassy in Kiev late on November 25, 2018, while smoke from a flare thrown by protesters is seen during a rally, following an incident in the Black Sea off Moscow-annexed Crimea, in which three Ukrainian naval vessels were seized by a Russian border guard vessel, as the three ships were on their way through the Kerch Strait heading for the port of Mariupol. Russia said on November 25 that it has seized three Ukrainian naval ships by force in a strait near Moscow-annexed Crimea, sparking alarm among Kiev's Western allies and raising fears of military escalation. Ukraine's navy had accused Russia of the unprecedented incident including firing on its vessels in the Kerch Strait, a narrow waterway that gives access to the Sea of Azov that is used by Ukraine and Russia.
AFP/Sergei Supinsky

EU, NATO call to 'de-escalate' tensions at sea between Russia, Ukraine

(Agence France-Presse) - November 26, 2018 - 8:11am

BRUSSELS, Belgium — The European Union and NATO on Sunday urged a "de-escalation" of tensions between Russia and Ukraine off the coast of Crimea and  called on Moscow to "restore freedom of passage" in the Kerch strait.

"We expect Russia to restore freedom of passage at the Kerch strait and urge all to act with utmost restraint to de-escalate the situation immediately," the EU statement said.

NATO in a statement also urged "restraint and de-escalation", and called on Russia "to ensure unhindered access to Ukrainian ports in the Azov Sea, in accordance with international law."

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