A Russian official has criticized the United States for its response to what it called a “terrorist attack” against its Black Sea Fleet.
Russian Ambassador to the United States Anatoly Antonov spoke on Saturday after a drone attack on the Black Sea port of Sevastopol in annexed Crimea.
Ukraine did not claim responsibility for the attack, but US President Joe Biden criticized Moscow’s subsequent decision to stop the arrangement that allows grain to be transported from Ukraine, calling it a “purely outrageous” and said it would increase starvation.
Russia has said it will block grain shipments from leaving Ukraine, one of the world’s largest producers. Termination of the UN-brokered deal is expected to worsen the food crisis worldwide.
According to Russian state-backed media TASS, Antonov said: “We note the complete disregard for the identified signs of the involvement of British military specialists in the organization today.”
He added: “The situation has gotten even worse. But the United States has no intention of noticing. Again, everything has been reduced to false accusations of our country in the worsening of the world food problem.
“In the context of attacks and provocations against Russian military and merchant ships involved in the Black Sea Initiative, we cannot continue to work without paying attention to security issues.
“It is unfair to condemn Russia for suspending the implementation of the agreement. This happened due to the reckless actions of the Ukrainian authorities.”
Russia claimed one of its ships was hit and all drones shot down, but Ukrainian outlet Pravda reported that three ships in the fleet were damaged. Newsweek was unable to verify the claims.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky called Russia’s decision to blame Ukraine for the attack and then suspend grain transport “rather predictable”, according to the BBC.
Previously, there were explosions in Crimea for which Ukraine did not take responsibility, including at the Kerch bridge and at the Saky airbase near Novofedorovka beach.
Russia has stepped up its rhetoric on apparent terror attacks, including on Saturday when it accused the UK of being behind the explosions that affected the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines.
The UK Ministry of Defense called the allegation “false allegations on an epic scale”.
Newsweek contacted the Kremlin for comment.