Russia may attack should another incident similar to the one with British destroyer HMS Defender occur in the Black Sea, Deputy Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation Sergei Ryabkov said.
The diplomat stressed that Russia may decide to use force against the violator of the state border.
“We are ready to repel any adventurer, but we warn you that it is best to leave the Black Sea peaceful and not to heat up revanchist sentiments, which most of the Ukrainian administration is plagued with," Ryabkov said.
The UK committed the provocation because it was used to "indulge" Ukraine, the official said. The United States and other NATO countries are acting similarly, which is evidenced by See Breeze 2021 exercise, the Russian Deputy Foreign Minister said.
The situation in the Black Sea region escalated after British destroyer HMS Defender crossed the Russian border on June 23 and entered three kilometres into Russian territorial waters near Cape Fiolent in the Black Sea. According to the Russian military, the ship was warned about the use of weapons in the event of the border transgression. The Russian border patrol ship fired warning shots twice, the Su-24M dropped warning bombs along the path of the destroyer. After that, the Defender left the Russian waters. The incident was called a challenge to Russia from NATO and part of the alliance's strategy.
The British Ministry of Defense later said that the destroyer was making "an innocent passage" in the territorial waters of Ukraine in accordance with international law, and that Russia did not fire warning shots. However, the BBC journalist Jonathan Beale, who was allegedly on board, heard the sound of the shots.
NATO has no plans to deploy troops on the Ukrainian territory, Jens Stoltenberg said. French President Emmanuel Macron earlier did not rule out a possibility to send Western military forces there