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Draft report on Azov Crisis to be considered in PACE

The PACE resolution would be submitted for the approval of the Political Committee of the Assembly on January 22
15:30, 22 January 2019

Open source

German MP Andreas Nick, appointed as the reporter on Azov Crisis, has presented the first draft report on the consequences of the Russian-Ukrainian confrontation. The draft document should be approved by the PACE relevant committee, as European Truth reported.

The PACE resolution will be submitted for the approval of the Political Committee of the Assembly on Tuesday, January 22 and it will be considered at the plenary meeting on Thursday, January 24.

Related: Azov Crisis: PACE to hold urgent debates on January 24

The two-page decision of the Assembly is named “Escalation of tension around Azov Sea and Kerch Strait and threatens to European security.”

Despite the fact that the Russian aggression is not mentioned in the name, the project generally is balanced and contains the claimants and demands to the country-aggressor.

Related: Ukraine’s Foreign Minister to discuss Donbas, release of Ukrainian POWs, Azov Crisis in Davos

The PACE offers to approve the demands to the Russia Federation

- urgently release the Ukrainian sailors;

- provide them with necessary medical, judicial consular service;

- provide the free passage through Kerch Strait for the Ukrainian vessels;

- not to allow the use of the force even if the Russian Federation thinks that the vessels violate the territorial waters.

Related: Poroshenko expects EU to support Ukraine regarding Donbas, Azov situation

It is proposed that PACE should state about the support of the territorial integrity of Ukraine, including Crimea and support the deployment of the international monitoring mission, which would guarantee the free passage of the vessels through Kerch Strait. Germany and France promote this initiative.

On November 25, the coast guard ships of the Russian Navy attacked the ships of the Ukrainian Navy, which have been carrying out a scheduled transition from Odesa port to Mariupol port in the Sea of Azov. Ukrainian ships were rejected passage via the Kerch Strait, Russian coast guards opened aimed fire on them.

Related: Azov crisis: Ukrainian sailors refuse to testify in court

All 24 sailors on board were captured and delivered to Moscow – 21 of them were delivered to Lefortovo remand center, another - to the hospital of Matrosskaya Tishina prison.

On December 3, the Russian prosecutors officially accused Ukrainian sailors with the 'illegal crossing of the state border' during the attack in the Kerch Strait.

Related: Ukraine sends ECHR full statement against Russia's actions during Azov crisis

Facing an extension of the sentence term, Ukrainian POWs detained in the Kerch Strait refused to testify in Lefortovo court. Sailors were distributed into six groups, four people in each. On January 15, 2019 Moscow's Lefortovo district court decided to keep 20 Ukrainian sailors in remand until April 24. On January 16, the court extended the detention term for another 4 sailors.

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