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International shipping to the Crimean ports has not been stopped - Ustymenko

22 March 2021

International lawyer, head of the Ukrainian Institute of Maritime Law and Security, Bohdan Ustymenko, on the air of the UA: Crimea TV channel, noted that at present, international shipping to the Crimean ports has not been completely stopped. In 2020, about 20 ship calls were recorded.

“International shipping to the Crimean ports has not been stopped. Still, there are cases, in 2020 there were about 20 ship calls to the Crimean ports. At the same time, Russian merchant ships are very actively using the port waters, as well as the territorial sea of Ukraine, there is quite active shipping, including passenger ships. Moreover, since 2014, all trade ports were closed, fishing ports were closed in 2016, but there is no clear responsibility for violations of these prohibitions”,- Ustymenko said.

The lawyer emphasized that according to Article 25 of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, a coastal state, for example Ukraine, has the right to exercise its powers in the context of a complete prohibition of navigation in its territorial waters.

“There is an idea to completely ban shipping, except for humanitarian ship calls to Crimean ports in case of trouble, to identify violators (captains of Russian ships, owners of shipping companies), as well as initiate criminal proceedings against them and then prosecute them using Interpol mechanisms”,- he explained.