The crew of the “Nord” select nationality
Fishermen will be judged depending on their recognition as Russians or Ukrainians.
Interlocutors “” close to the foreign Ministry and the presidential administration of Ukraine, stated that the consideration of the case about allegedly illegal border crossing of the Russian ship “North” will be associated with the “recognition or non-recognition of documents” issued in the Crimea and Sevastopol, which Kiev considers its sovereign territory. Thus, the Ukrainian government faced a choice: to consider fishermen with Russian passports issued in Kerch, the Russians or Ukrainians.
The second option can significantly mitigate the punishment of the captain of the vessel and completely exonerate the crew members, so their families from the Crimea were allowed to bring the passports of the defendants in the Ukrainian court.
Friday Kherson city court will continue to consider the case of the crew was in the Crimea fishing boat “Nord”, which, from the point of view of Kiev, illegally crossed the border of Ukraine. The captain of the ship — Vladimir Gorbenko, however, another Thursday night has been released and is now in the hospital “until further investigation”.
Recall that the fishing boat “Nord” was detained by Ukrainian border guards in the Azov sea on March 26. The ship itself was in the Crimea, and in the hands of all members of the crew were of Russian passports issued in Kerch, which Kiev considers Ukrainian city. The Ukrainian public Prosecutor’s office brought the captain on charges of “violating the order of entry in the temporarily occupied territory of Ukraine and departure from it”.
According to the lawyer Rybakov Alexander Rudenko, captain Gorbenko faces up to three years in prison, while the responsibility of crew members is much less — they will most likely only get a fine and 15 days of administrative arrest for illegally crossing the border.
As explained “Kommersant” interlocutors in Ukraine, the complexity arises with the recognition of fishermen Russians or Ukrainians. The original site of the Prosecutor General of Ukraine Vladimir Gorbenko was called the Ukrainian citizen, however, later acknowledged his Russian. “The decision of the Kherson city court to release the captain of the fishing vessel “Nord” Vladimir Gorbenko puts the Ukrainian authorities before a choice: to believe the captain and 10 crew members, citizens of Ukraine and to judge them in accordance with it, or to consider them foreigners with Russian passports and to impose a more severe responsibility.”
The problem, according to the interlocutor of “Kommersant”, will arise with the recognition of ownership of the ship.
“This topic is complicated and complex related to the acceptance or rejection of documents, registration certificates, title to the movable and immovable property and citizenship of physical persons on the territory of Crimea and Sevastopol,” — he said. Also, Kommersant’s source recalled that “the West and the international community does not recognize “Nord” legally acquired the Russian ship,” and did not rule out that “Russia may try to resolve this issue by force”.
“In my personal opinion, a response to the aggressive actions of Kiev against our sailors have to be tough. The current Ukrainian regime understands only the language of force,” he said Friday morning in his Facebook account, Governor of the Crimea Sergey Aksenov, adding that “the ship’s crew — citizens of the Russian Federation, passport issued to them by the state bodies of the Russian Federation in the Russian Crimea”.
The interlocutor of Kommersant, close to the presidential administration of Ukraine, in turn, explained that “the crew of the seiner by the Ukrainian side provided not only the necessary food and medicines, but also the possibility of using relatives to deliver to the court a Ukrainian passport and thus to avoid responsibility for illegal crossing of border of Ukraine”.
Russian border guards from the Crimea also distributed among the fishermen a memo on how to behave in case of meeting with Ukrainian patrols, reports TASS. They recommended a “call duty officer of the FSB border guard service or to contact the edge of the ship in this area.”
Yanina Sokolovskaya, Kyiv, Ukraine; Kirill Krivosheev