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Russia summons Ukrainian diplomat over Black Sea flights

Moscow, Feb 2: The Russian Defence Ministry has summoned the Ukrainian military attache in Moscow and handed a protest note over plane manoeuvres over the Black Sea, a media report said on Thursday. The attache to the Ukrainian Embassy was summoned on Wednesday evening, the Ministry’s spokesman Major General Igor Koshenkov said, Xinhua news agency reported. The note emphasised that the low-altitude manoeuvres by a Ukrainian An-26 military transport plane endangered personnel and equipment at two Russian drilling platforms in the Black Sea. The Russian side considered these actions as being “provocative,” said Koshenkov. The Russian Black Sea Fleet said earlier on Wednesday that the Ukrainian military plane carried out two provocative approaches at an extremely low altitude to Russia’s Tavrida and Crimea-1 drilling platforms. The Russia-Ukraine relations have strained over the Ukraine crisis and Crimea situation since 2014. (IANS)

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Ankur Kalita