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        Reports of Vessels Targeted off Ukraine


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        Reporting has emerged regarding the targeting of several commercial vessels offshore Ukraine.

        RIA Novosti quoted a message from the border service stating that at 11:00hrs UTC 24 February 22, in the Sea of ​​Azov, 21nm South of Mariupol, Russian civilian cargo ships SGV-FLOT and SERAPHIM SAROVSKIY were subjected to a missile attack by the Armed Forces of Ukraine”. Unverified images and video footage have appeared online appearing to show a vessel having suffered an explosion at the stern of the SGV-FLOT.

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        Unverified footage purporting to show the damage to the oil cargo vessel SGV-FLOT.

        Details regarding the events surrounding these vessels remain unclear. Russia is understood to be widely engaged in misinformation and the staging of events with the intent of creating pretext and justification for continued military action. The invasion of Ukraine by Russia has been robustly opposed by Ukrainian forces. Ukrainian resources are however conducting a defensive posture and are assessed as unlikely to have launched an attack on two Russian cargo vessels offshore Mariupol.

        Further reports have indicated that the Marshall Islands flagged Bulk Carrier MV YASA JUPITER (IMO9848132) has suffered damage to the vessel bridge area whilst drifting approximately 50nm South of Odessa.

        YASA JUPITER

        A statement by the Turkish General Directorate of Maritime Affairs.: "Following the information that a bomb hit the Turkish-owned YASA JUPITER with the MARSHALL ISLANDS flag off the coast of Odessa, which came to AAKKM, it was learned during the meeting that there was no request for help, that the ship was in transit to Romanian territorial waters, that there was no loss of life and that it was safe."

        All commercial operations at Ukrainian Sea ports have been suspended by order of the Ukrainian military. There have also been unconfirmed reports of Russian vessels blocking access to Ukrainian waters at the Northern edge of the Romanian EEZ.

        Any vessel currently within Ukrainian Ports should seek to leave immediately if deemed safe to do so. Vessels should ensure they are broadcasting on AIS and clearly state their intentions across VHF. Any vessels challenged by Russian military vessels should comply fully with instructions.

        At this time, Dryad Global advice all commercial operators to avoid any transit or operation within the EEZ of Ukraine or Russia within the Black Sea. Commercial operations within the EEZ of Turkey, Bulgaria and Romania remain unaffected at this time. As the situation develops there remains a high degree of uncertainty regarding the freedom of navigation throughout the wider Black Sea. As such the primary risk to all vessels and commercial operations operating beyond the key risk area remains one of commercial uncertainty rather than risk to safety of crew. Vessels and commercial operators are reminded to avoid all operations and transit within the EEZ of Russia and Ukraine at this time. No attempt should be made to access the Sea of Azov.