Gundarov told how to resist the Danish “initiative”
Denmark has said it may begin to inspect Russian tankers traveling through the Danish Straits. Formal occasion – fear for the environment, which may suffer due to “old Russian tankers.” In fact, apparently, Denmark, as a functioning member of NATO and the EU, wants to prevent sales of Russian oil or make them as difficult as possible. Military expert, captain 1st rank in reserve Vladimir Gundarov told MK how this Danish initiative could end.
As a representative of the Danish military command stated, “the basis for inspection will be laws allowing inspection of ships, that pose an environmental threat.” According to Danish estimates, approximately 2 million barrels of Russian oil are transported through the Danish straits every day.
Kremlin official Dmitry Peskov, commenting on Denmark's plans to detain tankers with oil from Russia, recalled the need to comply with the rules of international shipping.
– Denmark, if it is a normal state and not a sea robber, must comply with all norms of international maritime law and concluded international treaties, – says Vladimir Gundarov. – The Danish, or, as they are also called, the Baltic Straits – these are straits Big and Small Belts, Sound. They connect the inland sea with the open sea and have been open to civil shipping for 166 years. There are no duties, no restrictions for civil courts.
– For warships that travel through the Baltic Straits, their own order has been determined for peacetime. This is a restriction of this kind: if one, two or three warships are sailing, they must warn Denmark three days in advance that they will pass through the straits, heading in one direction or the other. If there is a detachment with more than three warships, they must warn Denmark 8 days in advance.
Russian warships, on long sea voyages, always pass through these straits. And they act in accordance with the rule that was established 166 years ago by the Copenhagen Convention, to which Russia is a party. No one excluded Russia from it; Russia itself did not leave.
– First of all – filing a complaint with maritime arbitration and international organizations. If such cases occur – this is a violation of international treaties concluded with Russia.
– They're not saying they're not going to let us through. They are going to inspect the ships. I can't imagine how this could happen with oil testing. If, for example, this is some old tanker that does not have European insurance, but is insured by a Russian company… What do they want to say: turn this tanker 180 degrees and send it back to Russia? But this is contrary to international agreements.
– Certainly. We notify Denmark three days in advance that our warship will pass through the straits. And this ship has every right to prevent the illegal actions of the Danish border forces against our civilian ships.
A similar case was – however, not in relation to Denmark, but in relation to Norway, which banned Russian fishermen from fishing near Spitsbergen. Although, according to the agreement, we have the right to fish there. Russian ships of the Northern Fleet were sent to that area, and they guarded our fishing vessels.