Photo from UNIAN

Head of the SBU Security Service of Ukraine Vasyl Hrytsak confirms the information about the SBU's military counterintelligence officers being on board the Navy boats attacked and seized by the Russian coast guards near the Kerch Strait on November 25, 2018

Officers of the Ukrainian special service were carrying out tasks in the framework of counterintelligence support of the Ukrainian Navy unit as provided for by article 12 of the Law of Ukraine "On the Security Service of Ukraine."

"For more than four years of the Russian aggression, the Ukrainian military counterintelligence officers have been on the forefront, alongside their brothers in arms from the Ukrainian Armed Forces, the National Guard and the State Border Guard Service. And it will always be this way. The 'surprise' of individual Russian officials regarding the presence of SBU personnel on board the boats does not at all indicate the absence of such practice in the counterintelligence agencies of the aggressor country. But the real surprise is that Russians used six 'FSB' and four naval vessels, as well as combat helicopters and aircraft of the Russian Aerospace Forces against two Ukrainian boats and a small tugboat. By the way, according to confirmed operational information of the SBU, one of the Russian attack aircraft used two combat unguided missiles against Ukrainian boats, resulting in one of the SBU officers being seriously wounded," according to the SBU's press center.

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A trial against 23 captured Ukrainian sailors may start in occupied Crimea today, November 27. The court hearings will be held in the occupied city of Simferopol.

The Russian Federal Security Service said they had interrogated Ukrainian sailors who were detained near the Kerch Strait.

The Russian Federation claims two Ukrainian SBU officers have been allegedly "exposed" among Ukrainian sailors. The FSB also published a video with Ukrainian sailors where they claimed they had allegedly violated the "territorial waters" of the Russian Federation.