Odessa port: Russia and Ukraine threaten to target ships in the Black Sea – Times of India

A day after Russia announced that all commercial ships headed to Ukrainian ports could be considered hostile, Ukraine’s Defense Ministry responded on Thursday with its own warning, saying any ships headed to Russian ports or ports in occupied Ukraine would be viewed as “military”. Cargo, with all associated risks. ,
“By openly threatening civilian ships carrying food from Ukrainian ports, launching missile and drone attacks on civilian infrastructure in peaceful cities, and deliberately creating military threats along trade routes, the Kremlin has turned the Black Sea into a danger zone for Russian shipping.” Ministry said. Tit’s warnings raised tensions in the Black Sea, raising fears that the war could escalate and severely disrupt commercial shipping, wreaking havoc on world grain supplies. It comes just days after Russia pulled out of a UN-brokered deal that allowed Ukrainian grain exports to reach the wider world, reducing global food shortages. Russia and Ukraine are both major producers of wheat.
A White House official warned that Russia has also mined routes to Ukrainian ports, adding to the complex maze of Ukrainian mines. “We believe this is a coordinated effort to justify any attacks against civilian vessels in the Black Sea and to shift the blame for these attacks on Ukraine,” National Security Council spokesman Adam Hodge said in a statement. Russia’s Black Sea Fleet certainly has the capability to sink unarmed merchant ships. Ukraine lacks an active navy but has had some success targeting Russian warships with missiles and drones. Last year, his army drowned the Russian flag in Moskva.
Russia’s Defense Ministry issued a warning to shipping operators and other countries on Wednesday that any attempt to circumvent the blockade could be viewed as an act of war, adding that cargo headed to Ukrainian ports The ships would be considered “potential carriers of military cargo”. ,
Escalating tensions in the Black Sea pushed US wheat futures up 8.5% on Thursday, their fastest single-day rise since the early days of Russia’s invasion in February last year.