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Talk:Kerch Strait incident



As per the UN website (copy) there were two November 26 United Nations Security Council meetings: the 8409th meeting, titled "Violation of the borders of the Russian Federation", "Under the agenda: Maintenance of international peace and security", and the 8410th meeting on "Ukraine," titled "Letter dated 28 February 2014 from the Permanent Representative of Ukraine to the United Nations addressed to the President of the Security Council (S/2014/136)." Wakari07 (talk) 01:40, 27 November 2018 (UTC)

Concerning this edit, the Russian agenda was voted away at the UNSC. I think it's fair to provide Russia's reaction on the spot. Ukraine called for their UNSC meeting specifically tweeting (in robot translation): "The cowardly behavior of an aggressor can be stopped only by joint coordinated efforts!" (="attack"). The Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs used the same language in that source. WP:NPOV means a balanced article with both points of view duly documented. Wakari07 (talk) 22:39, 2 December 2018 (UTC)


It would assist readers' understanding if they could see on the map where Odessa and Mariupol are located - but I cannot see how to add further locations to the map in Template:Infobox military conflict. Davidships (talk) 02:42, 28 November 2018 (UTC)

WP:maps#Using multiple icons shows how to put multiple icons on a map. I don't think it works on an infobox.Benjamin Trovato (talk) 03:11, 28 November 2018 (UTC)

This map is incorrect but I won't bother asking you to change it. Just watch the video of the incident and you'll see it can't have happened where you claim it has... — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:52, 30 November 2018 (UTC)

The current version of the map label, in the infobox, has "Kerch Strait" itself, not the incident or other places connected to the incident (not only Odessa, Mariupol and Berdyansk but also the Port of Kerch, the Crimean Bridge, Sevastopol Naval Base, Rostov-on-Don, the Don River, the Bosporus Strait ...). The coordinates refer to one point {{coord|44|51|00|N|36|23|04|E|type:waterbody|display=title}}, a "type:waterbody" which on OpenStreetMap lays almost exactly on the border of (Ukrainian or shared?) territorial with international waters. Maybe this is an acceptable compromise for now? Wakari07 (talk) 20:26, 2 December 2018 (UTC)

Clarification of form of passage usedEdit

What form of passage were the Ukrainian Navy sailing under Freedom of navigation or Innocent passage Shadychiri (talk) 04:02, 28 November 2018 (UTC)

Read this treaty. RGloucester 04:13, 28 November 2018 (UTC)
This is a link to the Wikipedia article on that treaty. Wakari07 (talk) 21:18, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
So the Ukrainian ships where sailing under Freedom of Navigation Shadychiri (talk) 11:33, 28 November 2018 (UTC)
Why do you think that? Wakari07 (talk) 20:59, 28 November 2018 (UTC)
Freedom of Navigation assumes that the sailing vessel has jurisdiction or rights on the sea it's sailing in either by the sea being outside jurisdiction of any country or the sea being in the jurisdiction of the state the vessel belongs to. Case on point, South China Sea crisis is a result of China assuming ships sailing through it's Presumed territory to be sailing under Innocent passage but Countries e.g. U.S. and Japan sail through the waters under Freedom of navigation Shadychiri (talk) 23:30, 29 November 2018 (UTC)
NO. FoN is a broad concept. They were sailing specifically under the treaty. In any case, you wikipedians are not allowed to draw their own conclusions, especially in murky legal matters. You have to find a source which links FoN to this event. - üser:Altenmann >t 09:08, 29 November 2018 (UTC)
That's why this is a talk page and not the main article. LOL 😂😂😂 Shadychiri (talk) 23:16, 29 November 2018 (UTC)
Case on point: it's a bilateral thing. No need to drag China, Egypt, Panama, Denmark, the Netherlands ... into this. Wakari07 (talk) 21:18, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
The 2003 Treaty between Ukraine and Russia allows for freedom of navigation through the Kerch Strait for all vessels of either country. However, both when Crimea was under Ukrainian control and today under Russian control, free passage through the Kerch Strait and through the Kerch-Yenikale Canal is managed by the captain of the Port of Kerch. The navigational channel is very narrow and makes a sharp S-curve as it passes from the Black Sea to the Sea of Azov. These circumstances require specific measures to be taken for safety of navigation. Those measures are that the passage of vessels alternates one-way and that vessels transiting the strait use pilots furnished by the captain of the Port of Kerch. This is what occurred without incident during the previous passage of Ukrainian naval vessels on 23 September and what clearly did not occur on the 25 November.Moryak (talk) 02:09, 2 December 2018 (UTC)

Number of Ukrainians capturedEdit

Of the four references following the number of 24, the three reliable sources BBC, RT and Al Jazeera don't mention the number. The fourth source (the Ukrainian-language one, in robot translation for me) is likely biased and incoherent. Hromadske.TV is an Ukrainian Western-funded NGO that ambiguously says based on a Facebook source, both "more than 20 sailors seized" and "more than 24 PoW" in the same article and that even the Ukrainian Navy wouldn't confirm these numbers. User:Jim7049, I'm not asking for ten references. I'm happy with one reliable source. Wakari07 (talk) 21:42, 28 November 2018 (UTC)

Note - Wikipedia determined by consensus that Russia Today is NOT a Reliable Source, since it is a state-owned and backed propaganda organ of a state that is not democratic nor allows what is known as "free speech"; each RT sourcing must be carefully examined to be utilized and how it will be utilized. (talk) 15:46, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
Oh, not true: it's determined in Wikipedia:Identifying reliable sources/Perennial sources as "no consensus". Also, in the West we too have plenty of "state-owned and backed" media sources... Wakari07 (talk) 19:07, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
  • I haven't checked rest of the sources mentioned in the article but if you do I'm sure you'll find plenty that mention the number 24. As I have seen both Russian news talking about the 12 detained out of 24 and Ukrainians demanding the return of 24 crew. Something as simple as this should have been searched for by you before adding a better tag. Jim7049 (talk) 21:47, 28 November 2018 (UTC)
  • I'm not just a lazy imp, you know. I did the effort to meticulously read the four sources provided. If you know of ten or plenty reliable sources, why don't you (or anyone else) just provide one? I read many more articles on the subject and nowhere did I find a serious attribution for this number. Wakari07 (talk) 21:51, 28 November 2018 (UTC)
    • Well then perhaps check the citation 34 of the article. Jim7049 (talk) 21:53, 28 November 2018 (UTC)
      • OK, I'm tired. Sorry. Wakari07 (talk) 21:58, 28 November 2018 (UTC)
        • No worries. Jim7049 (talk) 22:10, 28 November 2018 (UTC)
  • Per the official chronology published by the Russian Federal Border Guard Service the total number of Ukrainian detained is 24, three of which were treated for wounds at the Kerch Hospital. Early press reporting from the Ukrainian Navy appeared to be confused and inaccurate.Moryak (talk) 02:18, 2 December 2018 (UTC)

"Russian victory"Edit

This has been disputed numerous times, and now has a "citation needed" tag. I personally do not see it as worthwhile to mark this event as a "Russian victory" wasn't a battle in any normal sense of the word, and marking it as such seems WP:OR...what do you all think? RGloucester 00:52, 1 December 2018 (UTC)

It's probably better to just have the list of outcomes instead? It seems common for incidents eg Gulf of Tonkin incident Juxlos (talk) 01:37, 1 December 2018 (UTC)
That's the best option from my perspective...the nature of the situation is not so cut and dry as to be summarised by 'victory'... RGloucester 01:39, 1 December 2018 (UTC)
Even though it has the appearance of a 'successful' interception if the Ukrainian goal was to force their passage. Also possible to view it as a legal/criminal case rather than a military. An outcome would then appear in the courts. Wakari07 (talk) 19:16, 2 December 2018 (UTC)

Reactions sectionEdit

Please remember we are not a service for aggregating quotes. This material should be summarised. --MarchOrDie (talk) 13:37, 1 December 2018 (UTC)

I've done that, as it didn't look like anyone else was going to. Please remember, we summarise, we don't quote. --MarchOrDie (talk) 12:43, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
Still I removed the Moldovan reaction under WP:SYNTH. I read theirs (source) as a condemnation of both parties' use of force. Wakari07 (talk) 19:20, 2 December 2018 (UTC) The cited source mentions Kazakhstan in a totally different context. I removed that also under WP:SOURCE Wikipedia:Verifiability. Wakari07 (talk) 19:40, 2 December 2018 (UTC) Thinking of what to do with the Turkey entry based on here. The FM statement cited by Reuters reads "As a country sharing a Black Sea coast, we underline that passage through Kerch Strait should not be blocked." They would, in Reuters' words, be "worried by reports that Ukrainian ships had been fired on" but I don't interpret this as a simple, one-sided "criticising Russia's use of force". Thoughts? Wakari07 (talk) 20:06, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
MarchOrDie added the "lengthy quotation tag" on the UN section. Personally I think it's an important section and it should not be butchered or oversimplified. Maybe we can put some work into rephrasing instead of simply deleting info of who said what. Wakari07 (talk) 22:51, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
No maybe about it. But we shouldn't go back to the section being an indiscriminate list of quotations. And summarising sources instead of copying them isn't "butchering", it's called "writing". --MarchOrDie (talk) 22:54, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
I did what I could for the first meeting. I don't think it can be condensed much further.Wakari07 (talk) 00:06, 3 December 2018 (UTC)
I summarized the rest of the section too. Remember that "we don't quote" is not a Wikipedia policy. For instance, we could use footnotes for important, extended literal quotes. It's more a question of style and readablility. But of course I agree with WP:SOAP and WP:NOTBLOG. Wakari07 (talk) 10:50, 3 December 2018 (UTC)
Style and readability, yes. We do have WP:LONGQUOTE. --MarchOrDie (talk) 12:00, 3 December 2018 (UTC)
  • Thank you. What about Turkey's reaction? Wakari07 (talk) 13:04, 3 December 2018 (UTC)

Ukraine rejected that the ships had entered Russian territorial waters?Edit

RGloucester, please can you specify where is the text supporting sentence: "in rejecting the accusation that the ships had entered Russian territorial waters" in these three sources. Maybe I have overlooked it, but I can not see it anywhere. I do not think that Ukraine rejected it, it only stated that it gave advance notice to the Russians. Thanks for reply. Jirka.h23 (talk) 20:07, 1 December 2018 (UTC)

Jirka, so far all your edits here have been to force Russian claims of what happened into the top of the article, giving them WP:UNDUE weight, whilst not including the equivalent Ukrainian claims. Originally, the lead did not include either side's claims, and was simply a neutral recounting according to reliable sources like the BBC, which is what this should be. The Ukrainian source linked there clearly states that they view the relevant waters as the shared territorial waters of both Ukraine and Russia, not specifically Russian territorial waters, with the basis for that assertion in the treaty, which the BBC also mentions to the same effect. It is on that basis that the Ukrainians rejected the Russian claim of 'territorial waters'. I'd urge you stop putting in claims from the Russian FSB report without attribution. RGloucester 21:00, 1 December 2018 (UTC)
My edits are objective and they just trying to specify the incident, claims of both sides should be inserted. Nevertheless, where exactly do you think is the text in Ukrainian source supporting claim, that Ukraine rejected that the ships had entered Russian territorial waters? I do not see this claim anywhere. Jirka.h23 (talk) 21:36, 1 December 2018 (UTC)
References to using supposedly neutral and reliable source like the BBC fails to take into account that only official announcements by Ukraine and Russia actually attempt to factually address what happened. There were no press correspondents independently reporting events at sea as they occurred. Therefore, we are faced with citing official statements from two governments which both agree and disagree with each other depending on the specific time and nature of activity. All other information is side commentary, even of reliable sources like the BBC are correctly citing statements made by others.Moryak (talk) 02:15, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
If reliable secondary sources like the BBC choose not to recount something that either side says, that's a good indicator that the relevant piece of information is not verifiable, and hence not suited for inclusion in Wikipedia. Please use reliable secondary sources for statements of fact. If you want to include something that either side said directly, it must be attributed to that side and not recounted in Wikipedia's voice. More importantly, neither side's claims must be given WP:UNDUE weight. We assign weight based on how reliable secondary sources interpolate the information they gather from these primary sources; we do not do so independently, as that would be original research. RGloucester 02:19, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
I totally reject your assertion that Wikipedia should accept the judgements of the BBC. In this case, as I pointed out, the only primary sources are the official statements of the Ukrainian and Russian governments and militaries. All other comments clearly and by definition are "secondary sources." Why should Wiki articles give priority to secondary over primary sources?Moryak (talk) 02:24, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
It is not an assertion. It is Wikipedia policy, which you can read at WP:PSTS. If you think the BBC is not a reliable source, I suggest you open a discussion at WP:RS/N. RGloucester 02:27, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
RGloucester is absolutely correct - policy states secondary sources trump other sources. We can only use primary sources in stating a quote or POV, but a scholarly secondary source that debunks it takes precedence. That's been Wiki since it first grew legs and crawled out of the ocean . . . (talk) 15:53, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
  • Your reinsertion of this content into the lead, where it doesn't belong, is a blatant example of WP:UNDUE weight and WP:POV pushing. This content already exists in the body of the article, attributed to the FSB, as a Russian view on the relevant events. You've now put it in a primary position as if it were plain fact, rather than the opinion of the FSB, without providing adequate attribution, and in defiance of reliable secondary sources. RGloucester 02:35, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
This article appears to have no issues with continuing to post the opinions of the Ukrainian government as reported through various European media. Actually, the FSB chronology reflects the facts as they see them. I would submit that, in the interests of neutrality, their listing of the facts should be treated as are the contrary reports. As regarding pushing anything forward, in any exposition there is not alternative to putting some information ahead of other information. It appears that the issue is whose information is presented first and who has the right to make that judgement. By the way, Wiki policy does not forbid the use of primary sources, it merely says that secondary sources are preferred. Moryak (talk) 04:53, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
I do not know what you are discussing here, all claims by both sides and the sources like the BBC can be used, if it helps to clarify the situation. RGloucester, I ask you again and last time, where exactly do you think is the text in Ukrainian source supporting claim, that Ukraine rejected that the ships had entered Russian territorial waters? IMO, you are inserting unsourced content, which could be right away deleted. Jirka.h23 (talk) 09:29, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
It's very clear in the source. I'm not sure what you don't understand? Ukraine doesn't recognise Russian control of Crimea, or are you suggesting something to the contrary? Both sides sources cannot be used unattributed, because they are not reliable. The problem is not the use of primary Russian sources, it's the use of the sources as if they were undeniable fact, which is not allowed by policy, and which is wrong. BBC and other reliable secondary sources determine which side's account is more verifiable. RGloucester 16:35, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
Look, Russian territorial waters extend 12 nautical miles from the Russian coast as well as from the Crimean coast. The strait between them is very tight. That's why I ask you if you have a source, with claim that Ukraine rejected that the ships had entered Russian territorial waters. Otherwise this should be removed, as that it doesn't recognise annexation of Crimea is completely different statement. Jirka.h23 (talk) 18:08, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
Did you read the Ukrainian source??? Here's another one, admittedly from a source sponsored by the American government, but that should be satisfactory enough for reporting Ukrainian claims. It says "Kyiv said the Russians' actions violated a 2003 bilateral treaty designating the Sea of Azov and Kerch Strait as shared territorial waters and the UN Law of the Sea, which guarantees access through the strait". Here's another one, and another one, which says "Ukraine disputes every part of that claim: They say they attempted to radio Russian security at the strait; they deny the ships entered Russian-claimed waters; they deny any dangerous maneuvers; and they dispute the underlying assumption that Russia has the right to close the strait or that they have a right to claim the waters off Crimea as theirs in the first place". The Ukrainians, following what the treaty says, have asserted the notion that the relevant waters are shared territorial waters of both countries, not specifically Russian territorial waters or Ukrainian territorial waters. What exactly do you not understand? RGloucester 18:28, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
Yes, I have read the Ukrainian source, but theres nothing like it. The last source looks good to support this claim (Defensenews), I will look at them more closely later, as I do not have much time now. Thanks. Jirka.h23 (talk) 19:32, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
  • @Moryak: Do you want to explain what 'declared Russian territorial waters' means? That's not a phrase that makes any sense in English, or appears in any cited sources. The Ukrainians do not agree that those are "Russian territorial waters", and the secondary sources cited make that clear, meaning that you've inserted a piece of advocacy into the article that makes no sense in English. RGloucester 19:12, 3 December 2018 (UTC)
There are two issues here: territorial waters outside (south of) the Kerch Strait and passage through the Kerch strait. The 2003 Ukraine-Russia Treaty addresses passage through the strait and the Sea of Azov. It does not address the issue of territorial waters south of the strait. Both countries are guaranteed freedom of passage through the straits. The waters of the Sea of Azov are considered the internal waters of the two countries - obviously with some demarcation for economic zone purposes which would regulate activity such as fishing.

While a discussion of acceptance or rejection of Russia's claim to territorial waters based on Crimea is of interest, the citations used for the article sentence in question did not comment on whether Ukraine accepted or rejected Russia's claims. Obviously we know Ukraine rejects Russia's claim but our knowledge is not reflected in the foundational footnotes for the sentence in question.Moryak (talk) 19:26, 3 December 2018 (UTC)

The citation is very clear: "They say they attempted to radio Russian security at the strait; they deny the ships entered Russian-claimed waters; they deny any dangerous maneuvers; and they dispute the underlying assumption that Russia has the right to close the strait or that they have a right to claim the waters off Crimea as theirs in the first place". RGloucester 19:39, 3 December 2018 (UTC)
I think we should call it Russian-claimed territorial waters. BTW, check this precise work by Bellingcat 1. Jirka.h23 (talk) 17:11, 5 December 2018 (UTC)
Bellingcat is not a reliable source unless a report produced by them is reported on by reliable secondary sources. It has been previously discussed at WP:RS/N. If we say they are 'Russian-claimed territorial waters', we also have to say 'Ukrainian-claimed territorial waters'...this serves no purpose other than to create confusion. RGloucester 17:19, 5 December 2018 (UTC)
But it is used in your source and in your previous answer, and no one is confused. Bellingcat is really not a reliable source? Do you have link where it have been discussed? They confirmed, that the ships entered Russian-claimed waters, both that of Crimea and mainland Russia. Jirka.h23 (talk) 07:11, 6 December 2018 (UTC)
See Wikipedia:Reliable sources/Noticeboard/Archive 193#Bellingcat. If a Bellingcat claim is picked up by a reliable secondary source, we can use it with attribution. Otherwise, it's no good. Giving Russian claims primacy doesn't make much sense, unless, of course, you're trying to push a pro-Russian POV? RGloucester 15:29, 6 December 2018 (UTC)
Thanks for the link, OK, we will use it only with with attribution. Jirka.h23 (talk) 07:25, 8 December 2018 (UTC)
I guess then it must be alright to push a pro-Ukrainian POV. Wiki rules say articles should be neutral.Moryak (talk) 05:57, 9 December 2018 (UTC)
It's not acceptable to push any POV. 'Neutrality' means following the consensus viewpoint in reliable secondary sources, and giving other viewpoints WP:DUE weight based on how those RS treat such viewpoints. It does not mean equal validity, or WP:FALSEBALANCE. What's a reliable source is determined by our policies and guidelines. RGloucester 06:16, 9 December 2018 (UTC)

Inspection rights relevance?Edit

Are these relevant here? The source mentions them in context of Russian checks of ships to/from Ukrainian Azov ports ("Ukraine has criticised the Russian authorities, which this year started imposing checks on ships travelling to and from Ukrainian ports in the Sea of Azov. Under a 2003 treaty, Russia has the right to inspect any vessel sailing to or from the Sea of Azov. Ukraine has accused Russia of abusing that right"). And this is fully relevant in that context. But the incident we talk about is certainly NOT about inspections. It is more about timely notification and/or whether Russian permission is needed for Ukrainian Navy to pass the strait. So, the notice about inspections is hardly relevant here. Bests, --Seryo93 (talk) 17:58, 7 December 2018 (UTC)

Agreed. The right to inspection is completely WP:UNDUE for the lead, and not relevant. No 'inspection' occurred. Of course, it can be mentioned in the body of the article, in the context you mentioned, but it simply doesn't belong in the lead. Much the same, the inclusion of the business about 'SBU agents' in the lead seems to be an attempt to paint the Ukrainians as having been up to some sort mischief, but that's not a conclusion stated by RS, and doesn't make any sense. Again, that can be dealt with in the body, which it is. I don't really understand this shoehorning of specific trivial details into lead...the only reason I can see for it is an attempt to skew the reader's perception. RGloucester 19:22, 7 December 2018 (UTC)
You're probably right, the incident was more about Ukrainian ships that did not wanted to cooperate with the Russian authorities, except for notification, and about discussion whether the cooperation is necessary or not. We can mention it in the body of the article for detailed information. However, I see no reason to remove the mention of SBU agents onboard the ships, I consider it an important fact, and even Ukraine confirmed their presence. Jirka.h23 (talk) 07:38, 8 December 2018 (UTC)
What is 'important' about it? Why does it belong in the lead? What exactly are you proposing is strange about having intelligence agents on naval ships? RS do not give this point that kind of significance, and its already mentioned in body. RGloucester 13:49, 8 December 2018 (UTC)
All right, have it your way, I will do not push this to the introduction. Jirka.h23 (talk) 07:57, 9 December 2018 (UTC)
Why have you created two one sentence paragraphs, separating directly connected content? RGloucester 16:34, 9 December 2018 (UTC)
Pragraphs are too long, combining more things together, in first was separated the 2003 treaty from the bridge info, and in second the course of the incident from the introduction. Separated paragraphs for better clarity. OMG. Jirka.h23 (talk) 07:03, 10 December 2018 (UTC)
Jirka, do you think anyone will believe that? Do you think I think it's coincidence that those paragraph breaks occurred right after bits of information you've been trying to force into the lead? It's obvious you're trying to give those pieces WP:UNDUE emphasis. The information about inspections in the treaty is directly tied to the previous mention of an increase in inspections. There is no reason for a separate 2 sentence paragraph. Certainly, there's no reason to do that with the second paragraph either. There is no 'clarity', just bad writing and POV pushing. RGloucester 14:06, 10 December 2018 (UTC)
I agree; also the real issue is not the right of inspections. My very best wishes (talk) 17:23, 10 December 2018 (UTC)

Addition: @Jirka.h23: you've reverted my edit, argued with the words: "the right to inspect warships?! WP:EXCEPTIONAL", saying that "Yes. Any vessel". If this statement was not a lie, cite the source for it, please.--Nicoljaus (talk) 19:21, 10 December 2018 (UTC)

I am not sure if you are now trolling me, or you just can not read well enough written English. That it has the right to inspect any vessel, is sourced (and has been in the lead) in the article by both BBC a Unian. Let me know if you need to specify where exactly. Jirka.h23 (talk) 22:11, 10 December 2018 (UTC)
If you read English well enough, you can see that I've asked about warships. Articles by both BBC and UNIAN say nothing about the right to inspect warships. And it goes without saying, because the right to inspect warships is incredible. Even in its territorial waters, the maximum that a state can demand from a warship of another power is to leave the territorial waters:

Article 29
Definition of warships

For the purposes of this Convention, "warship" means a ship belonging to the armed forces of a State bearing the external marks distinguishing such ships of its nationality, under the command of an officer duly commissioned by the government of the State and whose name appears in the appropriate service list or its equivalent, and manned by a crew which is under regular armed forces discipline.

Article 30
Non-compliance by warships with the laws and regulations of the coastal State

If any warship does not comply with the laws and regulations of the coastal State concerning passage through the territorial sea and disregards any request for compliance therewith which is made to it, the coastal State may require it to leave the territorial sea immediately.

Article 31
Responsibility of the flag State for damage caused by a warship or other government ship operated for non-commercial purposes

The flag State shall bear international responsibility for any loss or damage to the coastal State resulting from the non-compliance by a warship or other government ship operated for non-commercial purposes with the laws and regulations of the coastal State concerning passage through the territorial sea or with the provisions of this Convention or other rules of international law.

Article 32
Immunities of warships and other government ships operated for non-commercial purposes

With such exceptions as are contained in subsection A and in articles 30 and 31, nothing in this Convention affects the immunities of warships and other government ships operated for non-commercial purposes.


Article 95
Immunity of warships on the high seas

Warships on the high seas have complete immunity from the jurisdiction

of any State other than the flag State.
So, once again, @Jirka.h23: why do you think that the 2003 treaty gave Russia the right to inspect Ukrainian warships? If it did not, and you know it, why do you add this piece of text to the article? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Nicoljaus (talkcontribs) 08:23, 11 December 2018 (UTC)
Hello Nicoljaus, now I understand what you meant to say. Sorry, but do not you think that you have acted a little arrogantly? Why do not you wrote this straight into the first summary? I did not know that the warships have an exception, this is not stated in the article, I have just inserted a general info for all vessels, as stated in BBC. However, this is very interesting, we should mention this after the sentence about 2003 threaty, warships on the high seas have immunity from the jurisdiction, however if any warship does not comply with the laws and regulations, the coastal state may require it to leave the waters. Do you have any reliable source in media? Another question is whether these ships can be considered as warships, but I think so. Jirka.h23 (talk) 12:31, 11 December 2018 (UTC)
It was not me who started blaming the other for trolling and poor English. Peace treaty, ok? For a discussion of this law, see here [1]:
Under this definition, a ship does not need to be armed in order to be considered a warship. Articles 95 and 96 of the LOSC recognize the complete immunity of warships and other government ships operated for non-commercial purposes on the high seas. 3 Regarding the territorial waters of a coastal State, Article 32 reaffirms “the immunities of warships and other government ships operated for non-commercial purposes”, but a coastal State may require a warship to leave its territorial sea if the warship does not comply with the laws and regulations of the coastal State (when consistent with international law) concerning innocent passage and disregards any request for compliance made to it.
I did not see in media statements that Russia had the right to inspect Ukrainiane warships.--Nicoljaus (talk) 13:00, 11 December 2018 (UTC)
It seems that it applies to such ships. Added to the article, anything that helps clarify the situation is important. Thanks for the interesting info. Jirka.h23 (talk) 14:17, 11 December 2018 (UTC)
You are in a hurry to prove that Russia had the right to demand to leave its territorial waters immediately. But according to the agreement of 2003, these are joint waters of Russia and Ukraine. And even if the coastal State considers otherwise, the priority is international law: "if the warship does not comply with the laws and regulations of the coastal State (when consistent with international law)"--Nicoljaus (talk) 15:09, 11 December 2018 (UTC)
If they reached only the mainland Russia waters, this should be certainly consistent with international law. And since waters near Crimea are claimed by both countries, it is hard to say if it is consistent with the international law (same with Turkish Cyprus), I will just add this note and everyone can make their judgment. Jirka.h23 (talk) 15:39, 11 December 2018 (UTC)
The Kerch Strait is the joint waters, according to the actual 2003 agrement, besides the question "whose Crimea".--Nicoljaus (talk) 16:01, 11 December 2018 (UTC)
Yeah, and they both should respect the agrement (including formal procedure for passage through the shared waters), if they still consider it valid. Jirka.h23 (talk) 21:00, 11 December 2018 (UTC)
Such issues are resolved by diplomats, and not by shelling and capture of warships that violated something in the opinion of only one of the parties.--Nicoljaus (talk) 08:44, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
You may be right, Russian reaction could be less controversial, while Russia argue that there were voices from Ukraine considering possibility to destroy the bridge and warned that the level of security around the bridge will be unprecedented. But we're now getting too far, we are not here to judge anything, just to clarify facts. Jirka.h23 (talk) 13:06, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
Yes of course. The facts are the shelling and capture of warships in international waters, and not the mystical "voices" inside someone's head.--Nicoljaus (talk) 13:55, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
The fact is also that they did not follow the official procedure to request permission (do you still want to continue with this?). Do you deny that they considered a possibility to destroy the Kerch Bridge? 1. 2, 3, 4. (for example: "The Ukrainian special services and Ukrainians themselves must pay attention, perhaps, via our allies in the Caucasus and others, to the destruction of the so-called Kerch Bridge." - Ihor Mosiychuk, the Deputy of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine 5.) Jirka.h23 (talk) 14:35, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
Who "they" considered a possibility to destroy the Kerch Bridge? Ukrainian warships? Or FSB mixed up the warships of regular Navy with the mysterious "Caucasian allies"? And about your actions there is a good article: Russia 'paved way for Ukraine ship seizures with fake news drive'--Nicoljaus (talk) 21:18, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
Who considered it, is written in answer above. Another question? Jirka.h23 (talk) 22:42, 12 December 2018 (UTC)

We are now into several discussions. I have comments as follows:

  • The Sea of Azov is the internal waters of Ukraine and Russia, not international waters per UNCLOS - demarcation inside the Azov Sea is to be determined between Ukraine and Russia
  • There is no dispute regarding the rights of both Ukraine and Russia to use the Sea of Azov
  • The situation with Crimea occasions changes in the likely demarcation of the Sea of Azov internally if one accepts the annexation
  • Passage through the Kerch Strait is guaranteed equally to ships/vessels of both Ukraine and Russia
  • Passage through Kerch Strait is along a narrow dredged channel (Kerch-Yenekale Canal) which is not straight and requires a managed transit regime to ensure safety of navigation
  • If one accepts the annexation of Crimea, management of passage through the Kerch Strait shifts from Ukraine to Russia since it is done by the captain of the Port of Kerch
  • The procedure for passage through the Kerch Strait is likely unchanged from the time it was Soviet, Ukrainian, or Russian
  • With Russia's annexation of Crimea and from its point of view, territorial waters extend 12 nm from both the Crimean and Russia mainland coasts
  • The protection and enforcement of the sovereignty of Russia's territorial waters is a mission of the Russian Federal Security Service Border Service Coast Guard Department
  • Entry into those waters is permitted only either 1) upon announced intent to transit the Kerch Strait for Ukrainian or Russian ports, or) 2 upon the invitation and permission of Russia
  • Any other attempt to enter Russia's territorial waters is in violation of Russia's federal laws which also prescribe allowable enforcement actions by the FSB
  • According to its laws, Russia can affect "hot pursuit" of a violator of its sovereign waters - this would cover catching the penetrator after they attempt to flee - in this case the Ukrainian ships penetrated more than ten miles inside the twelve-mile line over many hours (both approaching the strait and then attempting to exit the twelve-mile waters)
  • In the end, everything depends on the determination of whether Crimea is Ukrainian or Russian
  • International law does not decide this issue since its application is political - and clearly there are huge political differences that apply here
  • Getting back to the annexation, the issue is whether it was by the freely expressed will of the population of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea (an official Ukrainian, previously Soviet entity) or by Russian seizure/invasion using force of armsMoryak (talk) 20:43, 12 December 2018 (UTC)

When the Russians fired and damaged ships.Edit

@RGloucester: you've claimed, that the Russians fired on Ukrainian Navy ships, when they were "continued toward the bridge". Have you any source for such a statement?--Nicoljaus (talk) 14:22, 12 December 2018 (UTC)

I'm also unsure that this is correct revert. Even official Russian timeline claims, that first ships attempted to leave [claimed] Russian territorial waters ("В 18.30 группа кораблей ВМС Украины в целях прорыва блокирования снялась с дрейфа, начала движение курсом 200 градусов на выход из территориального моря РФ, скорость БАК «Бердянск», «Никополь» - 20 узлов, МБ «Яны Капу» - 8 узлов. "), and only after that they were, first, chased ("В период с 19.00 до 20.40 пскр «Дон», пскр «Изумруд» продолжили преследование группы кораблей ВМС Украины, вызов на связь на 16 канале УКВ-диапазона, подачу звуковых, световых и пиротехнических сигналов об остановке.") and only afterwards shot ("В 20.45 пскр «Изумруд» в координатах РФ Ш=44°53,47' СШ, Д=36°25,76' ВД в территориальном море выполнил предупредительную стрельбу в сторону групповой цели (БАК «Бердянск», «Никополь», МБ «Яны Капу») по левому борту на кормовых курсовых углах от пскр «Изумруд» с дистанции 2 кбт, которая позволяла увидеть факт выполнения предупредительной стрельбы<...>В 20.50 пскр «Изумруд» предупредил БАК «Бердянск», что в случае невыполнения требований об остановки по нему будет применено оружие на поражение <...>В 20.55 пскр «Изумруд» в координатах Ш=44°51,3' СШ, Д=36°23,4' ВД в территориальном море применил оружие на поражение по БАК «Бердянск».". So, according to Ru timeline, at 18:30 Ukrainian ships attempted to escape Russian blockade and go "out of Russian territorial waters", from 19:00 to 20:40 they were chased, at 20:45 warning shots were fired, and at 20:55 combat shot was fired. So, the edit is correct, albeit partially - ships initially contiuned towards bridge, but then were blocked by the Russians, then attempted to escape to Odessa and got chased by the Russians, and only afterwards shots were fired. Bests, --Seryo93 (talk) 14:34, 12 December 2018 (UTC)

Seryo, I more or less agree with you. My basis for the revert lies with the cited source, which says they were initially intercepted by the Russian ships, continued toward the bridge, were prevented from passing under it by the tanker. After that they tried to return to Odessa, whereupon they were fired on by the Russian ships, finally being seized in international waters off the coast of Crimea. My problem with Nicoljaus's edit was that it removed reference to the chase, and made it seem like the ships were captured near the bridge itself. The present sentence isn't ideal either, but I do not think that was an improvement. RGloucester 14:42, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
I've tried to clarify. RGloucester 14:54, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
It's not true. I did not delete any refs. That you removed the ref to a more recent BBC article. In my version it was directly stated that the ships were captured "in international waters near the strait", not "near the bridge itself".--Nicoljaus (talk) 15:12, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
I didn't say you removed any references. The word "reference" as I used it above didn't mean "reference" as in citation, but "mention of". You removed the part of the text about the chase, and the 'continuing toward the bridge' bit. I agree the previous sentence wasn't ideal, but I thought it was even more confusing without reference to what happened in between. Like I said, I've tried to fix the text. RGloucester 15:24, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
Well, but the “chase” in your text created the impression that it lasted continuously since the attempt of the Ukrainian ships to pass through the strait. This is a serious distortion of the course of events, I had to add text.--Nicoljaus (talk) 21:08, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
(edit conflict) I was not the author of the previous text, and I agree it was not ideal. I should've corrected your edit instead of reverting, and for not doing that, I apologise. Do you think that the version I've put in now sufficiently covers the relevant events? RGloucester 21:14, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
Now you've say that the ships "neared the bridge" and that they "remained in the vicinity of the bridge". According to the coordinates of the FSB, it happened 10 miles before the pass under the bridge, and it was the anchorage, i.e. the usual place for waiting. I am not sure that such epithets are good.--Nicoljaus (talk) 21:51, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
I think you will agree that the Ukrainian ships intended to pass under the bridge. "Neared the bridge", means "approached the bridge with intent to pass under it". The "vicinity of the bridge" means near the bridge, and the anchorage qualifies as such in relative terms. The reason they waited there, in the usual place for waiting, was because they wanted passage into the Sea of Azov. Going into specific details about which anchorage they stopped in is not appropriate for the lead...that can be added to the body. RGloucester 21:59, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
Such formulations create the impression that the ships almost slipped under the bridge. But it is not. I would suggest to say "entered the Kerch Strait" and "stopped at the anchorage" or something like that. This removes the subjective assessment of "vicinity" and "neared the bridge".--Nicoljaus (talk) 22:14, 12 December 2018 (UTC)
Actually, the chase began when the Ukrainian ships crossed the twelve-mile line heading for the strait and ended when they attempted to leave, having approached the bridge within about nine miles while more than ten miles inside the outer twelve-mile line in the Black Sea.Moryak (talk) 21:13, 12 December 2018 (UTC)

Anchorage No. 471Edit

The document regulating traffic through the Kerch Strait (in Russian): [2]

62. Не допускается вхождение на фарватеры и рекомендованные пути Керченского пролива, подходные каналы в порты Керченского пролива и выход из них или начало движения в зоне действия СУДС без разрешения СУДС и получения от нее сведений о навигационной обстановке и рекомендаций по движению. Судно, не установившее связь с СУДС, должно стать на якорь в разрешенных для постановки местах, указанных на карте, или лечь в дрейф до установления связи, получения рекомендаций и разрешения СУДС и сообщить свое место и действия по каналам связи ОВЧ.

66. Стоянка судов в морском порту осуществляется на рейдовых перегрузочных районах и якорных местах (якорные стоянки N 450, N 453 и N 471) и у причалов морского порта.

67. <...>По указанию СУДС, на период действия штормовых предупреждений, якорная стоянка N 471 используется судами для укрытия и стоянки до улучшения погодных условий, а также для стоянки судов, ожидающих транзитного прохода Керченского пролива

My translation:

62. It is not allowed to enter the fairways and recommended routes of the Kerch Strait, approach channels to the ports of the Kerch Strait and to exit from them or to start movement in the VTS [ Vessel Traffic Service] area without permission of the VTS and without receiving information about the navigation situation and traffic recommendations. A vessel that has not established communication with the VTS must anchor at the permitted locations indicated on the map, or lie in a drift until establishing communication, receiving recommendations and permissions from the VTS, and report its position and actions via VHF communication channels.

66. Ships' staying at the seaport is carried out at roads transshipment areas and anchorages (anchorages N 450, N 453 and N 471) and at the berths of the seaport.

67. <...> According to the instructions of the VTS, for the period of storm warnings, anchorage N 471 is used by vessels for sheltering and parking until weather conditions improve, as well as for vessels awaiting transit passage of the Kerch Strait

According to the FSB report, the Ukrainian ships announced their intention to go through the channel and stood at the anchorage 471, as they should have done.--Nicoljaus (talk) 01:17, 13 December 2018 (UTC)

The FSB report and the document above are primary sources. In order to insert the claim you just made into the article, you've got to find reliable secondary sources that draw that conclusion from the the document and the report's contents. Otherwise, it'd be WP:SYNTH. RGloucester 01:22, 13 December 2018 (UTC)
What a claim I "just made into the article"? The document above is just to illustrate which Anchorage No. 471 is being talked about.--Nicoljaus (talk) 01:34, 13 December 2018 (UTC)

"Had placed" or "at that time placed"Edit

@RGloucester: thank you for serious copyediting, but there is one question. You've replaced the phrase

The Ukrainian vessels continued moving but then stopped near the anchorage 471 about nine miles from the Crimean Bridge and stayed their for the next eight hours <...> At that time a large old freight ship was placed by Russians across the only passage under that bridge and thus the route to the Sea of Azov was physically blocked.

by the phrase

The Ukrainian vessels then continued their journey, stopping near an anchorage about 14 kilometres (9 mi) from the Crimean Bridge, and remained there for the next eight hours. The Russians had placed a large tanker ship under that bridge, blocking the route into the Sea of Azov.

It seems you are trying to claim that the passage under the bridge had been blocked before the ships stopped. Do you have any sources that the cargo ship was put under the bridge before the Ukrainian ships were blocked at 10.35 in the anchorage area No. 471? As for me, this happened around 2 p.m., the local website KerchInfo reported this at 14.25, but it not mentioned this ship at 13.55--Nicoljaus (talk) 19:51, 14 December 2018 (UTC)

I've fixed it. I was trying to fix the sentence, not change the content. "At that time placed" doesn't make sense in English. RGloucester 20:29, 14 December 2018 (UTC)
Accepted. I really appreciate your help because I really need it :( And what about the anchorage number and the ship's position across the passageway? I believe that this information is important because there have been speculations that the ship just ran aground.--Nicoljaus (talk) 21:32, 14 December 2018 (UTC)
Well, and what about "At this time something was placed"?--Nicoljaus (talk) 21:36, 14 December 2018 (UTC)
I've fixed it. The ship's 'position across the passageway' is made clear by the existing sentence. RGloucester 04:48, 15 December 2018 (UTC)

What relevance to mentioning anti-air batteries in CrimeaEdit

Nicoljaus reverted my removal of mention of anti-air batteries in Crimea as irrelevant to the Kerch Strait event. Rather than reverting the reversion, I am asking for a broader judgement of relevance. It would be extremely easy and even further irrelevant to add any number of other Ukrainian and Russian actions to this article but I think there are logical limits.Moryak (talk) 23:32, 15 December 2018 (UTC)

On the one hand, sources note that deployment of AA batteries happened after the incident or even link it to. On the other, however, plans for such deployment were reported well before this incident. So, I have some doubts that this can be considered a response to the incident. After all, denunciation of the Russo-Ukrainian Friendship treaty and Ukraine's plans to introduce resolution on Azov Sea into UNGA aren't reactions to the Kerch Strait incident as well - since both were considered and (in case of the Friendship treaty) initiated before this incident. Same goes for batteries then. --Seryo93 (talk) 13:43, 16 December 2018 (UTC)
Complex issue. I canceled the deletion because I had seen at the ref - two events were correlated there. If the deployment was done according to the previous plans - perhaps this is really unnecessary to be mentioned. But best of all, in my opinion, to mention both the fact that C-400 was soon deployed, and that this relocation was planned in advance. Thus, the information will be the most complete and objective.--Nicoljaus (talk) 14:41, 16 December 2018 (UTC)
Here is the analytical material where it says: For its part, Moscow has moved additional anti-ship and advanced air defence missiles into the region.--Nicoljaus (talk) 14:47, 25 December 2018 (UTC)

The map from Jirka.h23Edit

Jirka.h23 has posteed a map. It is alleged that the map is made on the basis of Bellingcat data. But Bellingcat claims that the shelling and capture were made outside territorial waters. On the map of Jirka.h23, the such point is depicted on the border itself. Since there is no instrument to measure distance on OpenStreetMap, I don’t know how correctly the line was drawn there. Until this issue is resolved, I believe that this map should not be in the article.--Nicoljaus (talk) 12:35, 20 December 2018 (UTC)

Hi Nicoljaus, it seems you are mistaken. On the map is depicted mayday call - claimed by the Ukrainian Liga Novosti audio tape 1. Not the exact place of shelling and capture, as exact location is not known because Ukraine provided only 4-digit locations, with this you can not specify exact location. Is it clearer? Let me know if you still do not understand anything else. Regards. Jirka.h23 (talk) 12:58, 20 December 2018 (UTC)
You've claimed that the map was "Based on Bellingcat", yes? Bellingcat said:
Additionally, an alleged mayday call released by Ukrainian publication Liga Novosti from one of the three Ukrainian vessels includes the audio “How many wounded do you have? I need help! I need help! Mayday! Mayday!” followed by the coordinates N 44° 51’ 00’’, E 36° 23’ 04’’. This location is southwest of the position Russia claims it fired on the ‘Berdyansk’, and is also outside of the 12 nautical mile limit, and thus in international waters.
Thus, the mayday call is even further from the coast than the intended site of the shelling. And the place of shelling is located "22.72km from the coast of Crimea, and more than 500m outside of Russian-claimed territorial waters when it came under fire." Why is the marker on your map right on the border if the map is “Bellingcat based”?--Nicoljaus (talk) 13:35, 20 December 2018 (UTC)
Yes, it is southwest of the position Russia claims it fired on the ‘Berdyansk’, but I did not place the shooting position because they were very close and could overlap, instead I chose an even more southern place claimed by Ukraine. If you convert coordinates: N 44° 51’ 00’’, E 36° 23’ 04’’ to decimal degrees (for example here) you get coordinates: 44.85, 36.384444. Then you can insert them to OpenStreetMap, where you will get this position. You know, from such a height 500m is nothing, so it may seem right on the border. The coordinates are right, you can easily verify it. Jirka.h23 (talk) 14:27, 20 December 2018 (UTC)
The coordinates are correct, but what about the boundary line? I would suggest drawing it more correctly, since you refer to Bellingcat.--Nicoljaus (talk) 14:34, 20 December 2018 (UTC)
Boundary line is not my work, but is included in OpenStreetMap. What do you suggest, to edit OpenStreetMap sea boundaries? I have no experience with it, but you can try it if you think they are wrong. For now, I do not see any prohibition on using these maps. Jirka.h23 (talk) 14:49, 20 December 2018 (UTC)
See what you did. You took a very crudely drawn border, combined it with accurate GPS data, and so you did an excellent original research - there was no shooting in 12-mile zone! No, this is not done. It may be worthwhile to remove these lines and draw 12-mile line at this point more accurately.--Nicoljaus (talk) 15:02, 20 December 2018 (UTC)
My intention was mainly to show positions in relation to the mainland, I did not think that the borderline could be inaccurate, OpenStreetMap is used here commonly. Now I consider their deletion from the picture and replacement by more accurate ones. Agreed? Jirka.h23 (talk) 15:32, 20 December 2018 (UTC)
Yes, that would be great! — Preceding unsigned comment added by Nicoljaus (talkcontribs) 16:46, 20 December 2018 (UTC)
Sea borderlines has been removed from the picture. Whoever wants, can make it there then manually. Jirka.h23 (talk) 08:26, 23 December 2018 (UTC)
Return to "Kerch Strait incident" page.