Six Russian warships passed the Kerch Strait and entered the Sea of Azov, reported the editor-in-chief of the BlackSeaNews Andriy Klymenko on Facebook.
According to Klimenko, anti-submarine ship Eysk, patrol ship Pavel Derzhavin, large landing ship Novocherkassk, large landing ship Caesar Kunikov, large landing ship Saratov, Missile Corvette Naberezhnye Chelny crossed into the Sea of Azov.
Klymenko noted that alsthough Russia has not closed new areas in the Sea of Azov, a large portion of the sea is already closed, in particular near the Ukrainian city of Mariupol.
The BlackSeaNews believes that this is another show of force by Russia to put military pressure on Ukraine. The large number of landing ships can indicate that Russia is preparing for a landing operation in parallel to preparation for a ground attack and a possible possible recognition of the so-called Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics, which may take place duding an emergency meeting of the Federation Council.
Russia has also been carrying out large amphibious exercises in annexed Crimea. Six large landing ships, a missile boat, a minesweeper, three rescue ships, a tugboat and a corvette of the coast guard of the FSB take part in them.