Ukrainian authorities say “two unidentified targets have approached the Black Sea Serpent Island”, most likely Russian ships. They allegedly asked the border guards to surrender. Serpent Island is less than 50 kilometers from Sulina, a strategic point in the Black Sea.
“Two unidentified targets approached the Black Sea Serpent Island. There are threats from the Russians demanding that the Ukrainian military surrender. The aggressor used the international communication channel for the safety of navigation “, according to a press release.
According to the Ukrainian authorities, the columns of Russian tanks entered the Lugansk region. “The enemy is in front of the columns with white cars bearing the OSCE emblem. The fighting continues in this direction. The border police together with the Armed Forces of Ukraine and the National Guard of Ukraine ensure the defense “, the authorities from Kiev said.
According to the Ukrainian Armed Forces, 6 Russian air force planes were shot down. In Uman, in the center of the country, a shell hit the city center. One civilian was killed and five others were injured.
The Serpent Island is an island in the Black Sea, but it is classified as a “rock” within the meaning of the Montego Bay Convention on the Law of the Sea due to the lack of its own sources of drinking water. It is located 45 km from the shores of Romania and Ukraine, near Musura Bay.
The Paris Peace Treaty between Romania and the Allied and Associated Powers of 1947 left Snake Island to Romania, but it was illegally transferred by the USSR after the end of World War II and annexed during 1948. At present it belongs to Ukraine, part of Ismail district of Odessa region of Ukraine. With an area of only 17 hectares, the island is not very important from a territorial point of view, instead it is important from a strategic-military and economic point of view.
The International Court of Justice in The Hague ruled in 2009 that Romania had 9,700 square kilometers of the continental plateau near the island, although the territorial claims of both dissenting states (Romania and Ukraine) were significantly higher.
Ukraine asks Turkey to close Bosphorus and Dardanelles straits
Earlier in the morning, Ukraine had called on Turkey to close the Bosphorus and Dardanelles straits for Russian ships and wants sanctions against Moscow, Ukrainian Ambassador to Ankara Vasil Bodnar told Reuters on Thursday.
Turkey, a NATO member state that has a Black Sea border with Ukraine and Russia, said Moscow’s actions against Kiev were unacceptable. Under a 1936 pact, Ankara has control of the two straits and may restrict the passage of warships if threatened or during a conflict.
“We demand that the airspace and the Bosphorus and Dardanelles straits be closed. We have sent our request to the Turkish side in this regard,” Ambassador Vasil Bodnar told a news conference in Ankara.