KIEV, July 22 (Itar-Tass) - Rescuers have found the bodies of all Ukrainian citizens, who died after a collision of Russian and Ukrainian vessels at the Sea of Azov, the Foreign Ministry’s spokesman, Yevgeny Perebeinos, said on Monday.
The incident occurred in the evening of July 17. Coast guards spotted a boat without identification marks in an area forbidden for navigation near the Dolzhanskaya Spit in the Sea of Azov. After futile attempts to get in touch with the intruders, the coast guard ship captain made the decision to approach the boat and examine it. However the boat sped away towards Ukraine. The coast guards started pursuing it, while continuing to give sound signals and firing flares into the air to make the boat stop.
However the boat made a precarious manoeuvre and turned sharply towards the pursuing coast guard ship, breaking international regulations for preventing collisions at sea. As a result, the boat ran against the patrol ship and overturned.
Four Ukrainian people died. One person was hospitalized in Yeisk, Krasnodar Territory, where he continues undergoing treatment. The bodies of two dead people were taken to Ukraine, the diplomat said.
Criminal proceedings have been instituted.