Ukraine says two commercial ships were hit by Russian missiles near Odessa port

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LONDON, Feb 26 (Reuters) – Ukraine said Russian warships shelled a Moldovan-flagged chemical tanker and a Panamanian-flagged cargo ship on Friday because of a cargo of grain near the Black Sea port of Odessa , a day after Russia launched a full-scale invasion. from Ukraine.

A total of three non-military vessels have been hit since the start of the invasion. On Thursday, the Turkish freighter Yasa Jupiter was hit off Odessa. Read more

Ukraine’s infrastructure ministry said the Moldovan-flagged ship, the Millennial Spirit, was carrying 600 tonnes of diesel when it attacked a Russian military ship.

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Earlier on Friday, Moldova’s naval agency said the crew of the Millennial Spirit was Russian and two of them were seriously injured.

“We just learned 10 minutes ago that the entire crew was rescued but two were seriously injured and are on their way to hospital,” Pavalachi said.

According to the Ukrainian ministry, the freighter Namura Queen was also hit by Russian missiles on Friday.

“According to information from traffic control and the harbor master’s office at 12:55 p.m. at anchor point No. 358, a rocket hit the stern of the mv ‘NAMURA QUEEN’,” said Ukrainian shipping agent Stark Shipping based in Odessa.

“The Panamanian-flagged vessel was heading to the port of Pivdennyi (ex. Yuzhny) to load grain… There was a fire on the vessel, the tug P&O STAR came to the rescue. The situation is under control “, he added. added.

The PO Star tug was seen alongside the Namura Queen earlier on Friday, according to ship tracking Refinitiv Eikon.

The owner, Fayette Shipping, did not respond to an email request for comment.

Nikko Kisen is listed by global vessel tracking website Vessel Finder as one of the owners of the Namura Queen.

Japanese shipping company Nissen Kaiun, a subsidiary of Nikko Kisen, told Reuters a cargo ship was hit, but declined to give further details.

On Friday evening, the Maritime Authority of Panama urged ships to maintain “maximum vigilance and reinforce safety conditions on board” when crossing Ukrainian and Russian waters, the Black Sea and the Sea of ​​Azov.

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Reporting by Julia Payne; additional reporting by Ahmad Ghaddar and Anna Pruchnicka, and Elida Moreno, Maki Shiraki in Tokyo; Editing by Daniel Wallis and Clarence Fernandez

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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