MOSCOW, November 27. /TASS/. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres expressed concerns over the Sunday incident in the Kerch Strait and called for avoiding any risk of further escalation of the situation, said Spokesperson for the UN Secretary-General Stephane Dujarric on Tuesday.
"The Secretary-General is greatly concerned over the 25 November incident near the Crimean Peninsula in the Black Sea at the approach to the Kerch Strait and involving Ukrainian and Russian vessels. He underlines the immediate need to avoid any risk of further escalation of the situation," according to a statement published on the UN web site.
The secretary-general urged both parties "to exercise maximum restraint and to take steps without delay to contain this incident and reduce tensions through all available peaceful means in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations." Guterres also pointed out that "the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, within its internationally recognized borders, in accordance with relevant General Assembly and Security Council resolutions, must also be fully respected."
On November 25, three Ukrainian naval ships breached the Russian state border in the Kerch Strait. The Ukrainian ships did not respond to the legitimate demands coming from the vessels of the Border Service of the Russian Security Service (FSB) and the Black Sea Fleet that had pursued them in order to stop them immediately and thwart their dangerous maneuvers. Because of their blatant refusal to submit to the order, gunfire had to be used to stop the intruding Ukrainian ships. Three Ukrainian servicemen were lightly injured and later received medical treatment. In addition, the ships were detained. A criminal case was launched into the breach of the Russian state border. Later in the day, following Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko’s order, the Council of National Security and Defense of Ukraine decided to impose martial law in the country.