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03 Jan 2024

Two ex-Royal Navy minehunters destined for Ukraine denied access by Turkey

Two ex-Royal Navy minehunters destined for Ukraine denied access by Turkey
UK MOD ' Crown copyright 2023
Originally posted on Forces.Net

Turkey has denied two ex-Royal Navy minehunter ships permission to enter its waters en route to the Black Sea where the ships are destined to be used by Ukraine.

The Sandown-class vessels were denied access because Turkey decided their presence would violate an international pact concerning wartime passage of the Bosphorus and Dardanelles straits.

Last month, the UK Government confirmed its intention to send two retired Royal Navy minehunters to the Ukrainian navy to help conduct sea operations in the war against Russia.

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The UK, along with Norway, had signed a deal with Ukraine to deliver long-term support, including training, equipment and infrastructure to bolster security in the Black Sea.

The reason behind Turkey's refusal is due to the triggering of the 1936 Montreux Convention which came into effect after Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022.

The convention blocks all passage of military ships for either party engaged in conflict.

However, exemptions are made for ships returning to their home bases.

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