Ukraine yesterday accused Russia of acting like an imperial power as it urged a tribunal in The Hague to take on its case over the seas around Crimea.
Kiev told the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) that Russia had illegally blocked access to the Black Sea, Sea of Azov and Kerch Strait since annexing Crimea in 2014.
Russia had pressed the court during its opening arguments on Monday to throw out the case.
“Russia’s approach is based on the imperial historical narrative pushed by its leaders. In the version of reality presented yesterday by Russia, nothing has changed since the Russian empire,” Ukraine’s deputy foreign minister Olena Zerkal told the PCA.
“This explains why Russia believes that it alone can make the rules, but it can’t.”
Zerkal criticised what she called Russia’s “complete disrespect for the international law of the sea.”