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Aim of Ukrainian plane incident over Black Sea to provoke tough Russian response — expert

February 02, 2:18 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The editor-in-chief of the Natsionalnaya Oborona magazine believes simultaneously the Kiev authorities did not hope for possible support from NATO forces in the framework of this provocation

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MOSCOW, February 2. /TASS/. An incident that involved an alleged shelling of a Ukrainian Antonov-26 turboprop signaled a conscientious attempt on the part of Ukraine to invite a tough Russian response and to pass itself off as a victim later on, Igor Korotchenko, the editor-in-chief of the Natsionalnaya Oborona (National Defense) magazine told TASS.

Earlier on Wednesday, Ukraine said an Antonov-26 turboprop had been targeted by gunfire in the country’s maritime economic zone and had sustained damage. The incident had allegedly taken place in an area off the coast of Odessa.

The staff of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet said, on its part, the Antonov-26 had made two provocative runs-in at the Russian oil rigs Tavrida and Krym-1 in the Black Sea but a guard on one of the platforms had only shot up signal flares to prevent the plane’s collision with the derrick.

"Kiev government sees the new Administration in Washington is posing risks in the sense that it may revoke the anti-Russian sanctions or ease them notably and that’s why it’s picking fights in order to trigger a reaction and then to accuse Russia of aggression," Korotchenko said. "On the face of it, Kiev will show itself off as an innocent victim."

Korotchenko believes simultaneously the Kiev authorities did not hope for possible support from NATO forces in the framework of this provocation.

"I’m confident NATO won’t let draws itself into just any options because of Ukraine, all the more so that all the vital decisions in that block come from Washington," he said. "I believe Ukraine itself doesn’t have the special hopes that any attempted provocations will push NATO into something."

Korotchenko said the incident occurred during the daytime but Ukrainian officials reported it only at night.

"Russia didn’t react to this provocation and that’s why Kiev began to conjure up media canards," he indicated. "I think debates on how this should be served up in the best possible way and what seasoning would suit it the best were in full swing during all this time.".

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