Ukrainian leader calls on North Atlantic Treaty Organisation to send warships after clash with Russian Federation

Ukraine’s new front is Europe’s big challenge

Russia's Capture of Ukrainian Ships Capture Shows It Can't Be Trusted: Mattis

Petro Tsygykal, chief of the Ukrainian Border Guard Service, announced at a security meeting on Friday that all Russian males between 16 and 60 will be barred from traveling to the country while martial law is in place.

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is asking North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies to send naval ships to the Sea of Azov to aid his country and "provide security" amid tensions with Russian Federation.

On Sunday, Russia opened fire on three Ukrainian ships and seized their crews in the Kerch Strait between the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov.

Russian state-run media said Friday Moscow isn't planning a counter-ban for Ukrainian men of military age. Since then, both sides have accused the other of being at fault.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that Poroshenko's request is "clearly aimed at provoking further tensions" and driven by the Ukrainian leader's 'electoral and domestic policy motives'.

Andrew Wilson, professor of Ukrainian Studies at University College London in the United Kingdom, told Newsweek that Ukraine's official explanation for the new rules "is sound", saying the move was intended "to stop "little green men" appearing, or 'polite people, '" using some of the nicknames given to the advance Russian troops in Crimea.

Sunday, two Ukrainian artillery ships and a tug, which had sailed out of Odessa in western Ukraine, passed through what Russian Federation now regards as its territorial waters off Crimea and the Kerch Peninsula. The Russian prosecutors charged them with "illegal entry into the Russian territorial waters".

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Trump announced Thursday on Twitter he would not be meeting Putin because "the ships and sailors have not been returned to Ukraine from Russian Federation".

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Monday that Ukrainian and Russian presidents should engage directly to resolve their recent confrontation.

As is known, on November 25, the Russian naval group attacked the vessels of the Ukrainian Navy in Kerch Strait, as they were en route from Mariupol to Odesa.

Russia's foreign ministry responded to the temporary ban on Friday, criticizing Ukraine leadership and saying it would not reciprocate.

In 2014, after the pro-Russian regime in Kiev was ousted in a coup, and a pro-NATO regime installed with US backing, Putin detached and annexed Crimea, for centuries the homeport of Russia's Black Sea fleet.

Martial law has been imposed in 10 Ukrainian regions until 26 December.

Russian Federation has backed separatists in eastern Ukraine in a conflict that has killed more than 10,300 people since April 2014.

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U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Wednesday that Russia's seizure of the Ukrainian ships violated a treaty between the two countries and showed that Moscow can not be trusted.

Last year, some 1,500,000 Russian nationals visited Ukraine according to official statistics from Kiev.

The Kremlin, the resolution reads, must "immediately release all Ukrainian crew members and vessels and to cease its harassment of Ukrainian and worldwide shipping transiting the Kerch Strait".

The EU has propped up Ukraine's war-scarred economy since the Crimea annexation while prodding the pro-Western authorities to pass reforms and tackle corruption.

The European Union on Wednesday strongly condemned Russia's actions but, after three days of debate, failed to agree to threaten new sanctions.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she plans to press Russian President Vladimir Putin at this weekend's G-20 summit in Argentina to urge the release of the ships and crews.

The peninsula existed as a semi-autonomous region of Ukraine, with political bonds to Kyiv but strong cultural ties to Moscow.

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