Tensions between Russia and Ukraine have risen sharply following the Nov. 25 seizure of three Ukrainian naval vessels and the detention of 24 Ukrainian sailors by the Russian navy. The incident took place as the vessels were attempting to pass from the Black Sea through the narrow Kerch Strait into the Sea of Azov, a shallow body of water bounded by Ukraine to the northwest and Russia to the southeast. After the incident, Russia blocked some additional naval traffic through the strait.
Ukraine is calling the Russian actions a violation of international law, while Russia says the Ukrainian ships attempted an unauthorized passage through Russian territorial waters. [read more]