Hundreds of Merchant Ships Continue to Visit Crimea

Ships disabling AIS in the hopes of avoiding detection.

The investigative consortium Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) says that two years after Russian forces occupied the Crimean peninsula, and long after the introduction of measures to block trade with the breakaway state, hundreds of commercial vessels continue to call at Sevastopol and other Crimean ports.

While Ukraine has enacted regulations intended to close the ports within what it still claims as its own territory, OCCRP says that a lack of enforcement contributes to the continued traffic: Ukraine has not yet prosecuted a vessel owner or a captain for a transgression, though it has detained one vessel and it is investigating other cases.

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