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UK Navy’s HMS Defender air-defense destroyer was intercepted in Russian territorial waters.
It was met with a Russian border patrol ship that was forced to issue a warning shot.
In the incident that took place on June 23, after the British Destroyer ignored the initial radio and fire warnings, Russian Su-24m aircraft carried out a warning bombing ahead the HMS Defender’s course.
A video was released by the Russian Defense Ministry, showing the interception before the bombs were reportedly dropped. In total, four OFAB-250 aerial bombs were discharged.
A recording of the negotiations was released online. The British warship was warned that its dangerous actions threatened the safety of navigation in the area, but the destroyer disregarded the received orders and did not respond to them with any action.
A BBC defense correspondent, who by some extraordinary coincidence was on the Defender’s board, claimed that more than 20 Russian aircraft and two coastguard ships have shadowed a British warship sailing near Crimea.
Then, the UK, attempted to tell a completely different story. Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that it would be incorrect to say that the HMS Defender was fired upon or that the ship was in Russian waters.
According to the British side, the warship was “conducting an innocent passage through Ukrainian territorial waters in accordance with international law.”
The correspondent on board described this ‘innocent passage’ the following way:
“I am on board the warship in the Black Sea.
The crew were already at action stations … Weapons systems on board the Royal Navy destroyer had already been loaded.”
Disregarding all evidence, the UK Defense Ministry said that it ‘believed’ the Russians were undertaking a gunnery exercise in the Black Sea and provided the maritime community with prior-warning of their activity.
No shots were directed at HMS Defender and the UK did not recognize the claim that bombs were dropped in its path.
Russia’s foreign ministry called the passage of the British warship through the area an act of “blatant provocation” and said it would summon the British ambassador over the incident.
The Russian ministry clarified that the British ship had ventured as far as 3 kilometers into Russian waters near Cape Fiolent, a landmark on Crimea’s southern coast near the port of Sevastopol, headquarters of the Russian Navy’s Black Sea fleet.
Great Britain insisted that the HMS Defender was taking the shortest, most direct route across the Black Sea, from Odessa, in Ukraine, to Georgia.
Relations between Britain and Russia are already at rock bottom, following accusations when the Salisbury and other scandals are taken into account.
A recent Whitehall report described Russia as the greatest military threat facing the UK.
The British are now teasing their enemy, trying to find the red lines. Having crossed them, they flee frightened by Russia’s harsh response.