Ukrainian Ministry of Internal Affairs sends additional forces to the Sea of Azov
The subdivisions of the Ukrainian Ministry of Internal Affairs increase presence in the Sea of Azov due to Russia's actions, said Ukrainian Minister of Internal Affairs Arsen Avakov.
“Having occupied the Crimea and part of the Donbas, Russia continues to attack our sovereignty. This concerns the waters of the Sea of Azov as well. That is why we are increasing the presence of the units of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, namely the units of the State Service for Emergency Situations and the State Border Service. The security of the Azov Sea coast and shipping are of fundamental importance for us. We are not going to indulge in the aggressive wishes of the invader country,” the Minister said.
In addition, he said that the unit is equipped with four marine vessels. A total of 54 people will be working there. One of the main tasks of the unit is the humanitarian demining of the sea water and the rescue operations.
Mykola Chechоtkin, the head of the State Emergency Service, recalled that the Donetsk-based State Emergency Service garrison lost 80% of its equipment and more than 50% of infrastructure in 2014.
Speaking at the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said that the Kremlin intends to "occupy" the Sea of Azov.
In mid-May, after the completion of the construction of the automotive part of the Kerch Bridge, Russia relocated ships, including warships of the Caspian Flotilla, to the Sea of Azov. Moscow referred the need to enhance security around the strategic facility.
On May 3, the State Border Service of Ukraine announced that “Russians have started a stringent policy of detaining and inspecting vessels” passing through the Kerch Strait. The State Border Service said that since April 30, Russian special services have been daily detaining vessels for inspection and identification of the crew.
Volodymyr Omelyan, the Minister of the infrastructure, said that Russian border guards have detained almost 100 Ukrainian ships in the Sea of Azov from the end of April to July 2018.
Later, Serhiy Popko, the commander of the Ukrainian Ground Forces, said that the Armed Forces of Ukraine increased the military presence in the Sea of Azov. On September 6, the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine decided to strengthen the military naval presence in the Sea of Azov.