Defense Minister Poltorak: Ukraine ready to counter Russian aggression in the Black Sea
Ukrainian Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak says that Ukraine is ready to adequately respond to Russia's possible aggressive actions in the Black Sea.
Answering a question whether Ukraine anticipates and gets ready to respond to Russia's possible "hybrid" aggression in the Black Sea, the minister told TV Channel 5: "100% ready. Of course, we draw conclusions from what has been happening in the Sea of Azov. We have opportunities for maneuvering and beefing up there [in the Black Sea]."
"Russia is not the sole owner of the Black Sea, because there are Alliance member countries there, they have their interests there. And I think that even if we do not take into account that there are NATO countries there, our capabilities are much greater there [than in the Sea of Azov], and our ability to adequately respond is also much greater," Poltorak said.
As UNIAN reported earlier, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko on October 12 enacted a National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) decree on urgent measures to protect national interests in the south and the east of Ukraine, in the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov, and the Kerch Strait.
The NSDC decree emphasizes that, having considered threats to national security in the south and the east of Ukraine, in the waters of the Black and Azov Seas and the Kerch Strait, caused by aggressive actions of the Russian Federation, the Council revealed conditions that could critically destabilize the economic, social and political situation, and result in a naval blockade of the Ukraine coast.
The Cabinet was instructed to create an interdepartmental coordinating body that should generalize the legal position of the state on drafting an official, consolidated claim against Russia, demanding its international legal responsibility for armed aggression against Ukraine.