The incident in the Kerch Strait where the Russian military rammed a Ukrainian tugboat, fired at and seized two military boats, injuring several sailors, was the cause of martial law in ten regions of Ukraine. Film crew of TV channel “Ukraine” over the whole week spent on the Azov, dealing with the military, sailors and locals. For a war correspondent of the program “Today. Pdsmi s Oleg Pantou” Andrew Kazakova and operator of Alex topchy this is not the first trip to the area ATO. “I’m at war ever since the capture of the Crimea, — said Andrey. — And I will cover all the events to its bitter end.”
— This was our third trip on the sea of Azov, — said Andrey Kuzakov. — First time visited there in June of this year when they started blocking our courts. Went to Mariupol to see the situation. Then we went along with the guards into the sea. They told me that sometimes the ships, the FSB went right over to the Berdyansk spit is closer to 12 nautical miles — the distance of critically small.
The second time I visited these places when in the area of Mariupol by land brought our boats, made at the “Forge in Rivalscom”. It was a boat “Kremenchug and Lubny”. When last week the Ukrainian ships were attacked in the area of the Kerch bridge, our crew again went to the district of Mariupol. I wanted to understand the situation that occurred.
And what are your impressions?
— It is clear that the military have current information, but it has not spoken to reporters. The enemy has intentions of which are known to our command. And that they were not true, there are specific procedures with the Ukrainian side. You know, this kind of show of force that the enemy abandoned their plans.
— Where did you manage to visit during the trip?
— We were in Urzuf village, located mid-way between Mariupol and Berdyansk. There is one of landfills, where they practiced various combat missions. Urzuf subordinated to the command of the operations of the joint forces. At the moment on the ground were training defense forces.
Any intervention in a modern war begins with air strikes. Practiced a variety of maneuvers, the reflection attacks. The scenario played out, what’s going on the landing, respectively, he worked artillery. In General, quite an impressive sight. Then we went to Mariupol.
* Andrew kouzakov the past week spent in Azov. Photo from Facebook
— You spoke with the sailors?
— Communicated with the crews of the ships “koretz” and “Donbass”, which in September this year went from Odessa to Mariupol. They moved in the same pattern, which was supposed to leave the following group, consisting of Harbor tugs “Yana Kapu” and two small armored artillery boats “Berdyansk” and “Nikopol”. The sailors of the “Donbass” and “Korets” warned the Russian side that will pass the Kerch Strait. By the way, provocations from the Russian side was last time.
— What happened then?
— Russian ships might interfere with our crews during their movement. They maneuvered and shifted their course, simulating a possible collision of ships. Sailors told how in the air up Russian aircraft, including bombers, flying over Ukrainian ships, simulating the attack (video provocations can be seen here. — Ed.)
When approached the Kerch Strait, the confrontation became more acute. The Russian side has declared that they fall into the area of so-called Pripev. In the language of the military’s regulations about where are areas where you do not have to enter the ship. They might turn up in connection with naval exercises. When our sailors got these Prepy and put them on the map, saw that, according to their position, they generally can’t come to the Kerch Strait.
But such areas should know in advance the international Maritime organization that deal with monitoring of routes. The Ukrainian side immediately contacted this organization and received the answer that no zones of the Russian side announced. Then our crews decided to go further. Approached the Kerch Strait and successfully overcame. When I spoke with the sailors, they could not understand why the second group of ships were detained and attacked. And kept saying that the crew was on the same, proven, pattern.
As they explain the situation?
— The camera is not the sailors said: “it is difficult for Us to comment on the actions of a madman.” Referring to a specific person at the pinnacle of power in Russia. Because the motivation to skip some and attack others were not.
See also: In Ukraine showed that actually occurred in the Kerch Strait (video)
— They feel the tension among ordinary people?
Is a frontline city which has already faced a lot of turmoil during the war. No panic I have ever seen. People live peacefully, go to work, walk. Did not notice the hype and in stores — no one packs not buying. Last week the city held a big rally to demand the Russian side to let go of our children. It is clear that all experience, but never doubt the fighting spirit of the Ukrainian army.
— You know, you managed to rise into the air over the Azov sea.
— Flew along the coast by helicopter, along with the commander of OOS Sergey Nevim. Enemy ships have been reported. New told that not so long ago there was two incidents when the ships of the border service of Russia came at a critically short distance from the sea border with Ukraine. Then he gave the order to withdraw to the coast artillery. She defiantly was imposed on these ships, near the howitzers laid out the shells. Seeing this, the Russian ships turned around hastily and walked away. When this happened a second time, New gave the order to lift the aircraft into the air. Violators also retreated. Ukrainian military are ready for any development of events, and demonstrate this to the enemy.
In the course of this trip made on you the strongest impression?
— Probably, the facts narrated by our sailors. For example, that a small armored artillery boats, which began to produce recently passed its first combat test. We are talking about “Berdyansk”, which was shot by the Russian military. In fact, this is the first sea battle in the international waters of the Black sea since the Second world war. And our boat survived!
Although earlier Russian experts noted skeptically that such an armored ship to be sunk, as they said, throwing potatoes. But it turned out that he is able to withstand a hit by a missile, missiles, naval guns and small arms. Our “Berdyansk” had not collapsed and sank.
See also: “Geopolitical gopnichestvo”: in Ukraine, told how Putin punished for the seizure of ships off the Crimea
— How did they react to RAM the Russian ship our tow?
— This is unacceptable, if you follow the officer’s honor. Told me that in Soviet times the Black sea, the military has used such a tactic. It’s called the pile — when a vessel all the body runs into another. Such incidents were by ships of the United States and NATO entered the Black sea.
But then the ships were practically the same size. And here is a great Russian tug bore down on a small inshore vessel. Still did it with such passion. One of the sailors said: “It’s like I went to seventh grade and began hitting the children.” But in this case it is about military honor is not.
As previously reported “FACTS”, due to the Russian aggression, President Petro Poroshenko submitted to the Verkhovna Rada a draft law on the termination of the Treaty of friendship, cooperation and partnership between Ukraine and the Russian Federation.
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