The U.S. claims that Russia's provocations in the Sea of Azov breach Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity. Johnathan Cohen, the U.S. Deputy Representative in the UN said this during the Security Council session on October 30.
'Russia’s occupation of the Crimean peninsula and its aggressive actions in the Sea of Azov, where Russia is harassing and obstructing international shipping bound for Ukraine’s ports, further demonstrate Moscow’s blatant violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity and readiness to undermine the regional stability', reads the statement as posted on the U.S. mission's website.
The official stressed that the provocations get in the way of negotiations in the Normandy format and the dialogue between Kurt Volker and Vladislav Surkov, the major American and Russian diplomats in this process.
Speaking of the 'election' in occupied Donbas, slated for November 11, Cohen emphasized that 'the United States joins with others in condemning the announcement by the so-called “Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics” that they intend to hold what they are calling “elections” on November 11'.
'These actions are clearly illegitimate and have no basis in Ukrainian law (...) These sham elections, staged by Russia, run directly counter to efforts to implement the Minsk peace agreements. The elections also obstruct and undermine efforts to end the ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine, which has killed over 10,000 people and causes more casualties daily. The Minsk agreements state that the OSCE must supervise elections, which are to be held in accordance with Ukrainian law and OSCE standards. The November 11 balloting will satisfy none of these conditions', Cohen said.