MOSCOW, November 27. /TASS/. Moscow declares strong protest to Washington over a US destroyer’s entering into Russian territorial waters on November 24 and considers this incident as a provocation geared to break down peace, the Russian foreign ministry said on Friday.
"The Russian foreign ministry declares strong protest over this incident. We consider it as a blatant provocation geared to break down peace and good order," the ministry said.
The ministry recalled that a US warship had violated Russia’s maritime border "with an aim of challenging the legal status of the Peter the Great Bay." "Washington is well aware of Russia’s position concerning these waters that are internal waters of our country covered by Russia’s sovereignty. Attempts to claim otherwise are inadmissible," the ministry stressed.
Moscow called on Washington to drop provocations linked with violations of Russian borders and warned about possible consequences for such violations. "The fact that an American warship entered Russia’s territorial sea creates no consequences for the status of the corresponding waters in terms of international law and cannot create any. We urge the United States refrain from such reckless provocations in future," the ministry said. "Otherwise responsibility for possible consequences will rest entirely on the American side. We reserve the right to respond."
According to the ministry, a demarche was presented to the US side via military diplomatic channels following this incident. "Such muscle flexing is apparently meant to exacerbate the situation, which once again proves that at the current historical stage the United States is opting to use force methods to advocate own foreign policy interests," the ministry added.
The Russian defense ministry said earlier that on November 24 Russia’s Admiral Vinogradov anti-submarine destroyer had prevented Russian border violation by the United States’ USS John S. McCain in the Peter the Great Bay. According to the ministry, at 06:17 Moscow time (03:17 GMT) on Tuesday, the USS John S. McCain, which entered the Sea of Japan several days ago, violated Russia’s territorial waters in the Peter the Great Gulf, "passing the maritime border by two kilometers."
"The Pacific Fleet’s Admiral Vinogradov anti-submarine destroyer used an international communication channel to warn the foreign vessel that such actions were unacceptable and the violator could be forced out of the country’s territorial waters in a ramming maneuver. After the warming was issued and the Admiral Vinogradov changed its course, the USS John S. McCain destroyer returned to international waters," the statement said.