Blackseafor (Black Sea Naval Cooperation Task Group)
Comment by the Information and Press Department of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs regarding the implementation of the Montreux Convention by Turkey
Recent statements by the representative of the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs that the statements by the Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, regarding the non-implementation of several provisions of the Montreux Convention by Turkey "are not true at all" are extremely puzzling.
The Montreux Convention envisages a range of restrictions for sojourns of military ships of non-riparian states in the Black Sea. In particular, irrespective of the purpose of entry, according to Art. 18(2) of the Montreux Convention such ships cannot remain in the Black Sea for more than twenty-one days.
The facts are evidence that the USS Taylor frigate of the US Navy entered the Black Sea on the 5 February and left via the Mediterranean Sea on the 9 March, thus exceeding the maximum admissible deadline by 11 days and this, therefore, is a violation of the Convention. At the same time Turkey has not informed us about such a delay.
For our part, we reported our concerns to the United States and Turkey in the form of verbal notes.
We believe that Turkey, as well as other non-riparian states, will strictly observe their obligations under the Convention in future.
10 April 2014