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Web Alert: Martial Law imposed in parts of Ukraine

29 November 2018

The Standard Club would like to make its members aware of the current situation in Ukraine. In response the recent seizure of three Ukrainian naval vessels by the Russian Navy, Martial Law has been imposed in selected areas of the Ukraine, regions having a common border with Russia, as well as on coastline territories. For full details of all areas affected by this development please see the attached map.

The club's correspondent has reported that there are no serious restrictions on the operation of state services or bodies as a result of Martial Law being imposed. Public areas/places are freely accessible, which is an important consideration for foreign seafarers venturing ashore. All Ukrainian ports, Mariupol and Berdyansk included, are working normally. No any additional restrictions relating to Martial Law have been introduced in ports.

Seafarers of Russian nationality serving onboard of foreign ships calling at the Ukrainian ports will not be subject to discrimination or persecution. The correspondent ‘believes’ that the Ukrainian crew of foreign ships in Russian ports will also be free of discrimination or persecution. However, it should be kept in mind that Immigration Authorities may bring an accusation against those seafarers who visited Crimean ports, as per an older restriction which may be relevant in these circumstances.

One of the worst aspects of the current situation is that foreign vessels heading to the Ukrainian ports on the Azov Sea (such as Mariupol and Berdyansk) may be detained in the Kerch Strait for inspection and search. The correspondent was unable to vouch for the possible actions of Russian Authorities. In view of the fact that Russian Authorities have previously detained ships for up to 10 days, they believe that this recent incident may aggravate the situation.