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Russians failing to indicate purpose of travel face ban from Ukraine, says border service

A spokesman says the key reason why Russian citizens are prohibited from entering Ukraine is their failure to confirm their purpose of travel

KIEV, November 29. /TASS/. The key reason why Russian citizens are prohibited from entering Ukraine is their failure to confirm their purpose of travel, Andrei Demchenko, a spokesman for the State Border Guard Service, told the 112 Ukraine television on Thursday.

In the last few days, Ukraine has refused numerous Russians entry to the country. As such, roughly 100 Russian citizens who flew from Minsk to Kiev have been forced to go back because they were denied entry. On November 27, the Ukrainian border guards banned entry for 76 Russians in Kiev’s Boryspol and Kiev airports. The Ukrainian State Border Guard Service said that they acted in accordance with current legislation on granting foreigners entry to the country.

"For the past day, Ukraine banned entry for 33 Russian citizens, mainly because they could not confirm the purpose of travel," Demchenko stressed. He added that Russians are denied entry to Ukraine because "some of them don’t have the relevant documents that give them the right to cross the border, and there are also people who have illegally visited Crimea (bypassing Ukrainian checkpoints - TASS).

The spokesman for the Ukrainian State Border Guard Service pointed out that generally the number of Russian citizens blocked from entering Ukraine hasn’t been more than it was prior to the introduction of martial law across some regions of the country.

The Verkhovna Rada (Ukraine’s parliament) convened a special meeting on November 26 with 276 lawmakers having voted in favor of martial law, surpassing the required minimum of 226 votes.

Kiev’s move to impose martial law across the Vinnytsia, Lugansk, Nikolayev, Odessa, Sumy, Kharkov, Chernigov, Donetsk, Zaporozhye, and Kherson Regions along with the country’s territorial waters in the Azov-Kerch water zone followed the Kerch Strait incident.

The Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) reported on November 25 that the Ukrainian warships, the Berdyansk, the Nikopol and the Yany Kapu had breached the Russian state border on Sunday morning and later attempted to carry out illegal maneuvers in Russia’s territorial waters later. The Ukrainian vessels ignored the legitimate demands of the Coast Guard of the FSB Border Service and the Black Sea Fleet to immediately halt, and end their dangerous maneuvers. The Ukrainian warships’ blatant disregard of the orders triggered a chase involving some gunfire to stop them. Consequently, the ships were detained in Russian territorial waters.

Moscow branded Kiev's stunt in the Kerch Strait as a dangerous provocation, while the European Union and NATO called for a de-escalation of tensions.