Ukraine has recently urged Ankara to restrict the passage of Russian warships through the Bosphorus and Dardanelles Straits.
According to the Ukrainian Ambassador to Turkey, Vadily Bodnar, “I call on the Turkish administration to help Ukraine. We demand that the Bosphorus and Dardanelles Straits be closed to Russian warships.”
The envoy called on, “all the nations to establish a coalition against Russian President Vladimir Putin in order to stop the war from engulfing more of the region. We are currently in a state of war. We urge the entire world to follow the rules of war. We call on the international community to impose sanctions on Putin,” Bodnar said, while focusing on the need to block all of Russia’s overseas assets.
As per the 1936 Montreux Convention Regarding the Regime of the Straits, Turkey has sovereignty over the straits of Bosphorus and the Dardanelles. The document enshrines the free passage via the straits for trade ships only.
Black Sea nations may move military ships of any class via the straits during peacetime by notifying the Turkish authorities beforehand. Meanwhile, the document significantly limits the class and displacement of military ships for non-Black Sea countries.
However, Turkey has additional powers to regulate traffic via the straits during wartime. Under certain circumstances, Ankara may ban a country from using the straits.
On Thursday morning, Putin added in a televised address that in response to a request by the heads of the Donbass republic, he had made a decision to possibly carry out a special military operation in order to protect the people “who have been suffering from abuse and genocide by Kyiv regime for eight years.” The Russian leader stressed that Moscow had no plans to occupy Ukrainian territories.
Russia’s defence ministry later reported that the Russian armed forces were not delivering strikes against Ukrainian cities. The ministry focused that precision weapons were destroying the Ukrainian military infrastructure, and there were no threats to civilians.