Russian media show Ukrainian ships in Crimea amid Putin's offer to return them

UNIAN 2

The Russian Zvezda TV channel has shown a footage of the state of Ukrainian warships in occupied Crimea, which Russian President Vladimir Putin offered to return to Ukraine.

Video screenshot

The video shows sea-sweepers Cherkasy and Chernihiv, as well as the Zaporizhia submarine and a rescue tug Kremenets.

It can be seen that over the years of annexation, the Ukrainian ships have become dilapidated and they are in bad condition. Some of them have rust and shabby paint.

As UNIAN reported earlier, on January 11, 2018, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Russia could hand over to Ukraine warships and aircraft from the occupied Crimea.

Read alsoUkraine General says Putin's "peacemaking" efforts sham"Using this opportunity, I'd like to say we are ready to continue this process: we are ready to return Ukrainian military ships that are still in Crimea, we are ready to hand over aviation equipment and armored vehicles. However, it [the military equipment] is such a wreck. But it's none of our business. This is the condition it actually was in. And naturally, nobody has ever serviced it all these years," Putin said at a meeting with editors-in-chief from Russian printed media and news agencies in Moscow on Thursday, January 11.

After the annexation of Crimea in March 2014, Russia began to transfer captured equipment to Ukraine, but the transfer was suspended after Russia had invaded eastern Ukraine.

On April 15, 2014, the-then Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov said that the Russian Defense Ministry suspended the transfer of weapons and military equipment from the occupied Crimea to Ukraine. At that time, 389 armored vehicles were transferred, including eight helicopters and three warships.

On July 5, Russian Foreign Ministry stated that Moscow had suspended the transfer until "complete termination of hostilities by Ukrainian forces".

To date, 17 ships, boats and ships have remained in Crimea, including 11 warships, with the large landing ship Kostyantyn Olshansky among them, the Slavutych command vessel, anti-submarine corvettes Ternopil and Lutsk, sea-sweepers Cherkasy and Chernihiv, the Zaporizhia submarine, a rescue tug Kremenets, and other vessels.