Russia has allegedly fired upon — and reportedly captured — ships belonging to the Ukrainian navy, the BBC reports. According to reports being issued forth from the Ukrainian navy, Russian naval vessels have seized two Ukrainian gunboats in addition to a tugboat in the aftermath of a chase. Russian special forces were apparently involved in the seizure of the Ukrainian boats, in a move which is almost certain to escalate the existing tensions between the two nation states.
Occurring off the coast of Crimea, which was annexed by Russia in 2014 in a conflict which is still tumultuous, per CNN, it appears that neither side is offering up the same version of events. For their part, Russia remains silent on the apparent exchange, though it had earlier accused Ukraine of illegally entering waters under Russian jurisdiction. The Russians then moved to blockade a vital waterway in the Sea of Azov with a tanker placed beneath a bridge in the Kerch Strait, per Al Jazeera.