Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov warned on Thursday, against any “provocative steps under slogans of freedom of navigation,” saying that Russia can bomb on target in case of its border violation.
“We can appeal to common sense, demand respect for international law. If this does not help, we can bomb not only on the course but also on the target, if our colleagues do not understand.
“The territorial integrity of the Russian Federation is inviolable. The inviolability of its borders is an absolute imperative, we will guard all this both by diplomatic and political means and if necessary by military means,” he said.
Ryabkov said Moscow sees the incident with the British Royal Navy destroyer as “very serious” and condemns the actions of the British military.
The Russian Defense Ministry said on Wednesday the country’s border guards stopped a British Royal Navy destroyer — HMS Defender — that Russia said was violating its waters.
According to the ministry, the Defender entered Russian territorial waters near Cape Fiolent in the Black Sea and did not respond to warnings of the Russian coastal forces, it only turned back when warning shots were fired.
The British Defense Ministry rejected the Russian claims that warning shots were fired at one of its vessels in the Black Sea, saying the Royal Navy ship was conducting “innocent passage through Ukrainian territorial waters in accordance with international law.”
Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova called “lies” London’s reaction to the incident and promised that “a complex response will be given in such situations.”
She also said the British ambassador to Russia will be summoned to the ministry, he will be declared “a tough demarche” in connection with the situation.