BEIRUT, LEBANON (7:00 P.M.) – Secretary General of NATO Jens Stoltenberg demanded that Russia release the detained Ukrainian sailors and ships it seized during the Kerch Strait incident, speaking in a press conference in Brussels on Monday.
“Russia must release the Ukrainian sailors and ships, it must also allow freedom of navigation and unhindered access to Ukrainian ports in the Sea of Azov. Ukrainian vessels, military as well as civilian, have the right to navigate through the Kerch Strait and the Sea of Azov,” the NATO chief said.
Stoltenberg stated that since the “the illegal annexation of Crimea” NATO has provided political and practical support to Ukraine, highlighting the increase in the number of ships under NATO’s command in the Black Sea region.
He also called on Russia to respect the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty saying that the US is “in full compliance” with it whereas Russia has “developed, produced and deployed a new missile.”
“We seek dialogue with Russia, and we inspire to improve the relations. But to make this possible, Russia must fully comply with its international commitments,” he concluded.
Video credit: Ruptly