10 Jan 2020 21:42

Russian military accuses U.S. destroyer crew in Arabian Sea of gross violation of rules

MOSCOW. Jan 10 (Interfax) - The Russian Defense Ministry has dismissed claims by the United States military that a Russian ship came dangerously close to a U.S. destroyer in the Arabian Sea.

"The statement circulated by representatives from the U.S. Fifth Fleet concerning a supposedly 'dangerous' approach by a Russian ship to the Farragut destroyer in the Arabian Sea is untrue," the Defense Ministry said in a statement obtained by Interfax on Friday.

"It was the U.S. Navy destroyer which, being left of the Russian warship's pathway moving forward, on January 9, 2020, most grossly violated international rules for the prevention of collisions at sea by performing a path-crossing maneuver," the statement said.

"The unprofessional actions of the U.S. destroyer crew were a deliberate violation of international norms for maritime navigation safety," the statement said.

"The Russian warship crew acted professionally, carrying out a maneuver to prevent collision with the rogue ship," the ministry said.

The Russian military said that Rule No.15 of the 1972 Convention on the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea (Crossing situation) reads: "When two power-driven vessels are crossing so as to involve risk of collision, the vessel which has the other on her own starboard side shall keep out of the way and shall, if the circumstances of the case admit, avoid crossing ahead of the other vessel."

This instance of rule violation was captured on the U.S. destroyer's camera and posted on Twitter, the statement said.

Earlier on Friday, CNN reported, citing the U.S. Navy, that a Russian ship had performed maneuvers close to a U.S. destroyer in the northern Arabian Sea.