Russian naval ship, cargo vessel collide off Constantinople coast, all soldiers rescued

The collision was caused due to fog and low visibility

A Russian naval intelligence ship sank off Turkey’s Black Sea coast on April 27 after colliding with a vessel carrying livestock, Turkey’s Coast Guard said, noting that all 78 personnel on board were evacuated.

The ship, identified as the Liman, collided with the Togo-flagged Youzarsif H., the authority said on its website.

The collision was caused due to fog and low visibility, the Turkish shipping agency GAC said. It occurred 29 kilometers from the Constantinople town of Kilyos on the Black Sea coast just north of Constantinople.

Turkish authorities dispatched a tugboat and three fast rescue vessels, the Coast Guard said.

Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım’s advisers spoke to their Russian counterparts to convey Ankara’s sadness over the collision involving the vessel, sources at Yıldırım’s office said.

No information was immediately available about the state of the Youzarsif H, or its crew or cargo. The Togo-flagged livestock carrier was built in 1977 and has a capacity of 2,418 tons, according to Thomson Reuters shipping data.

It is managed by Nejem Co. Marine Services, according to the data.

It was not clear whether either vessel was headed to the Bosphorus Strait from the Black Sea.

Meanwhile, another Russian navy ship, Caesar Kunikov, entered the Marmara Sea from the Aegean Sea, heading toward the Bosphorus, with Turkish state-run Anadolu Agency saying that no information was received over its final destination.

The Bosphorus, which cuts through Istanbul, is one of the world’s most important waterways for transit of oil and grains. The 31-kilometer waterway connects the Black Sea to the Marmara on the way to the Mediterranean.