Moscow says the United States is encouraging provocation between Russia and Ukraine over the recent confrontation off the coast of Crimea and the seizure of three intruding Ukrainian military vessels in Russian waters.
Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told reporters in the Swiss city of Geneva on Wednesday that Washington should mediate between Ukraine and breakaway regions instead of defending Kiev.
The top Russian diplomat pointed out that Ukrainian warships had ignored maritime law on Sunday when they tried to enter the Kerch Strait, aiming to create a scandal for domestic political purposes.
Elsewhere in his remarks, Lavrov asserted that the US encouragement for such acts “saddens me greatly.”
The remarks come after Russian President Vladimir Putin accused his Ukrainian counterpart Petro Poroshenko of orchestrating a naval “provocation” in the Black Sea at the weekend to bolster his popularity ratings before an election…