Russian Men Barred From Entering Ukraine Amid Escalating Crisis

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"Russian men aged 16 to 60 have been barred from entering the country", he said at a meeting dedicated to ensuring the country's defense capability in the situation of martial law, which also involved Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko.

The move comes amid escalation tensions between the two countries after Russian border guards on November 25 opened fire and captured three Ukrainian naval vessels and their 24-member crew off Crimea, which Russia forcibly annexed from Ukraine in 2014.

In 2014, after the pro-Russian regime in Kiev was ousted in a coup, and a pro-NATO regime installed with US backing, Putin detached and annexed Crimea, for centuries the homeport of Russia's Black Sea fleet.

The fighting there has killed at least 10,000 people since 2014 but eased somewhat after a 2015 truce.

Moscow blamed Ukraine for the clash, saying that the ships failed to provide proper transit notifications, which Kiev and Western states have dismissed as false.

The travel restriction on Russian men would not apply in cases where they visit for "a funeral or some other humanitarian purpose", he said.

"We ask the Ukrainian side, too, to be sensible because we know that we can only solve things through being reasonable and through dialogue because there is no military solution to these disputes", she said. There, Russian-backed separatists are fighting the Ukrainian military, which is advised, trained, supported and supplied by North Atlantic Treaty Organisation members.

Overall, 35 vessels have been prevented from carrying out normal operations and only vessels moving towards Russian ports on the Azov Sea are permitted entry, he said on Facebook.

Predictably, our interventionists decried Russian "aggression" and demanded we back up our Ukrainian "ally" and send military aid.

Image result for sea of azov
Sea of Azov

Moscow contends that Ukraine deliberately violated the new rules of transit that Kiev had previously observed, to create an incident.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel says she's not backing off plans for a joint pipeline with Russia, but is pledging to ensure Ukraine remains a transit country for Russian natural gas.

According to him, on November 28, another radio communications between the officer of the FSB Russian Federal Security Service and Commander of the Russian border guard ship, Captain Salyayev, the commander of the Don ship, which had rammed the Ukrainian tugboat, were intercepted.

The servicemen, including two security service agents, were arrested on Sunday, when three Ukrainian naval vessels in the Black Sea tried to enter the Kerch Strait to reach the Sea of Azov.

Andrew Wilson, professor of Ukrainian Studies at University College London in the United Kingdom, told Newsweek that Ukraine's official explanation for the new rules "is sound", saying the move was intended "to stop "little green men" appearing, or 'polite people, '" using some of the nicknames given to the advance Russian troops in Crimea.

Moscow fired on and seized three Ukranian gunboats and said three sailors were injured, while Kyiv said six were wounded.

Her comments follow the seizure of Ukrainian ships by Russian Federation on Sunday which has prompted Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to argue for further pressure being put on Moscow.

Ukraine insisted that its vessels were operating in line with worldwide maritime rules, while Russian Federation said they had failed to get permission to pass. Watching a Russian boat ram a Ukrainian boat is no substitute for economic opportunities.

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