“The Russian navy opened fire on a cargo vessel in the Black Sea to force it to stop for checks, the defense ministry said, the first such confirmed incident since Moscow withdrew from a key grain export deal in July.
The dry freight vessel Sukru Okan, sailing under the flag of Palau, had been heading to Ukraine’s port of Izmail when the naval patrol ship Vasiliy Bykov came across it in the southwestern part of sea early Sunday morning.
The navy ordered the vessel to stop for inspection and when the operators of the Sukru Okan didn’t respond, opened fire, Russia’s ministry said.
When the vessel finally stopped, Russia sent a group of soldiers in a helicopter to board it for inspection. They later allowed the ship to resume its journey to Ukraine, the ministry said, without elaborating what cargo — if any — it was carrying.”