The blockade of the Strait of Kerch has Ukrainian ports

Yevgeny Maloletka  AP  TASS

Yevgeny Maloletka AP TASS

The rift escalated further after a naval incident on November 25 in which the Russian coast guard fired on and seized three Ukrainian navy vessels.

A Ukrainian serviceman stands on board a coast guard ship in the Sea of Azov port of Mariupol, eastern Ukraine, Monday, Dec. 3.

Omeljan stressed that the Ministry of Infrastructure is working with allies in the anti-Russian coalition on the return of the occupied territories, the release of the captured sailors and ships, the restoration of worldwide law and the cessation of the economic blockade of Azov region of Ukraine.

Under the rules of the treaty, ships of non-riparian countries can not remain in the Black Sea for more than 21 days.

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Ukrainian prosecutors accused Savchenko of plotting a coup in collusion with Russia-backed rebels, and she was taken into custody in March after the parliament stripped her of her immunity.

And U.S. surveillance planes and drones regularly skirt Russia's Black Sea coastline, as well as that of Crimea, the Ukrainian peninsula that Moscow annexed in 2014. "We encourage you to use all available means to stop the aggression of Russian Federation against Ukraine and its clear violation of worldwide rules, norms by imposing additional energy and financial sanctions", - said Chairman of the Ukrainian Parliament, in a letter to the Vice-President of the United States.

The Ukrainian church has been part of the Russian Orthodox Church for centuries, but Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has pushed for the creation of an independent church as he faces March's presidential election. But Poroshenko has pledged that martial law wouldn't interfere with the vote.

The lower house of Russian parliament, the State Duma, approved a statement Tuesday accusing the Ukrainian president of a "reckless and cynical attempt to change the situation in his favor" and a "desire to cling to power at any cost even at the threat of a full-scale war".

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