Ukraine delivers diplomatic note to Turkey in relation to ship carrying Russian S-300 missiles via Bosphorus


The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine has expressed Ukraine’s concern in connection with reports that S-300 missile systems were transported from Syria to Russia via the Bosphorus Strait on board the Sparta II ship chartered by the Russian Ministry of Defence.

Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, quoted by European Pravda

Details: On 29 August, the  Ambassador of Turkey to Ukraine Yagmur Ahmet Guldere was invited to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Mykola Tochytskyi, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, delivered a verbal note to the Turkish Ambassador on behalf of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine.

Tochytskyi drew the Turkish Ambassador’s attention to the fact that, "according to the provisions of the Convention regarding the Regime of the Straits from 20 July 1936, the specified vessel falls under the definition of a warship for the purposes of this Convention."

Tochytskyi requested the Turkish side to provide official information regarding the cargo that the Sparta II ship was transporting via the Bosphorus Strait, as well as regarding the measures taken by Turkey in order to fulfil the provisions of the Convention and prevent further escalation of the Russian-Ukrainian war.

The Deputy Minister expressed hope that the Turkish side will abide by the decision it made on 28 February 2022 to close the Black Sea straits for Russian warships during the Russian-Ukrainian war, "in line with Turkey’s support for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine within its internationally recognised borders."

Naval News, an independent media outlet covering global naval defence news, reports that Russia is believed to have shipped an S-300 air defence system from its bases in Syria to the Black Sea.

The ship is understood to have sailed from Tartus in Syria, where S-300 components had been gathered on the pier. The S-300 likely came from a site at Masyaf in northern Syria. Sparta II started its voyage on 20 August and passed the Bosporus overnight on 24-25 August. After waiting at anchor near the Russian coast, it pulled into Novorossiysk on 27 August.

Sparta II belongs to Oboronlogistika (Defence Logistics), a company controlled by the Russian Ministry of Defence that provides transportation and logistics services. It was sanctioned by the U.S. in May 2022. Sparta II has a civilian crew, but delivers various types of cargo, including military cargo.

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